Wiktionary:Tea room/2015/April

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discussion rooms: Tea roomEtym. scr.Info deskBeer parlourGrease pit ← March 2015 · April 2015 · May 2015 → · (current)

PIE *leǵ-/*les-

PIE *leǵ- means "to gather". On Proto-Germanic *lesaną it says that the PG word comes from PIE *les- "to gather". Would an expert in proto-languages please review these entries as it seems to me that they should be linked. These roots have led to words meaning "to read" in most Romance and Germanic languages (except English). Danielklein (talk) 02:15, 1 April 2015 (UTC)

Linked how, exactly? There is no etymological connection between *leǵ- and *les-. —CodeCat 02:18, 1 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Out of curiosity, how likely is it that there would be two PIE roots that differ by one sound, and that have the same meaning? How would they not overlap, and how would such a situation even arise? ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │ Tala við mig 21:18, 1 April 2015 (UTC)
I do not know if it works out this way in this instance, but it could if these roots represented *le-ǵ- and *le-s- respectively, yet when I researched it didn't appear that this was the case. Leasnam (talk) 18:59, 24 April 2015 (UTC)
That wouldn't be possible; you have to have a well-formed root before you can start adding interchangeable consonant suffixes to it, and *le- isn't a well-formed root. As for synonyms that differ by only one sound, consider chop and lop, run and rush, or the relevant senses of dull and dumb. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 19:49, 24 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Granted, phonetically close synonyms exist. But the examples here are also semantically different enough that the existence of different words is not surprising.
Perhaps someone could help elucidate how PIE *leǵ- and *les- differ in their meanings? Or if they might be related? ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │ Tala við mig 21:20, 24 April 2015 (UTC)


Wikipedia has the following anecdote about the show Mystery Science Theater 3000:

"Murphy then invited Vonnegut to dine with his group, which Vonnegut declined, claiming that he had other plans. When Murphy and friends ate later that night, he saw Vonnegut dining alone in the same restaurant, and remarked that he had been "faced... but nicely faced" by one of his literary heroes."

The Mystery Science Theater 3000 Amazing Colossal Episode Guide, as visible on Google Books, gives the full quote as:

"That was it. Faced by my literary hero. Nicely faced though, he was charming throughout."

What does this mean? I've never come across "faced" like this before, and it doesn't match any definitions in our entry or in the OneLook dictionaries. Context suggests something like stood up or blown off, or perhaps something related to lose face. MST3K's cast were from the Midwest US and the writing tended to be filled with Twin Cities references, so I wouldn't be surprised if it was Minnesota/Wisconsin slang. Smurrayinchester (talk) 11:51, 1 April 2015 (UTC)

Looks like short for get faced=in your face/dissed/insulted... Leasnam (talk) 17:23, 1 April 2015 (UTC)


The entry is missing a definition. "Winded" can describe the method that a windmill is turned to face into the wind to allow it to work. A mill may be winded by a tailpole, wheel and chain, or a fantail. I'm unsure of the referencing requirements here, so am raising the question here instead of boldly adding the entry. Mjroots (talk) 20:44, 1 April 2015 (UTC)

We probably want a sense at wind (verb), then. Does our existing sense "To expose to the wind; to winnow; to ventilate" cover it, or not? Equinox 21:04, 1 April 2015 (UTC)
Not quite - "to turn to face the wind" is nearer the mark. Mjroots (talk) 21:24, 2 April 2015 (UTC)


There is a rfdef on outwear with a quote about "outworn its welcome". Isn't this just another example of definition 1, to wear out? Am I missing something? Kiwima (talk) 21:14, 1 April 2015 (UTC)

You are right. In fact, "wear out one's welcome" exists, which shows that it's the same thing. Equinox 21:15, 1 April 2015 (UTC)


How is nastoyka used in English? It's derived from the Russian насто́йка (nastójka). --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 22:27, 1 April 2015 (UTC)

  • I have added a definition (based on Googling), but it is still pretty rare outside of Russia. SemperBlotto (talk) 07:03, 2 April 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for that. I'll see what else can be done to the entry. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 10:53, 2 April 2015 (UTC)
I personally use that word in the same situations where I would use настойка. I limit it to contexts involving Slavic culture; I call it an infusion otherwise, since that word is more widely known, and describes the preparation process accurately. I don't feel confident enough in my experience with the (English) word to edit the entry, but I think it should be made clear that they're not necessarily liqueurs, though they can be. Nastoykas can be made without additional sugar, and with ingredients that are not sweet, without being any less of a nastoyka. Perhaps simply replacing "liqueur" in the definition with "liquor" or "an alcoholic drink" would work. Eishiya (talk) 02:35, 13 April 2015 (UTC)

Nicknames of individuals

I'm not sure what people think about these, so I wanted to check before adding them. I'm talking about adding a definition for Eva Perón at Evita and a definition for Steve Wozniak at Woz — do we agree that these are lexicographical material? —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 06:43, 2 April 2015 (UTC)

  • If they are "words" in a "language" then they would be welcome because of our commitment to include "all words in all languages". SemperBlotto (talk) 06:46, 2 April 2015 (UTC)


This is not an alternative form, it is obviously a misspelling. Pronouncing c softly before a contradicts English phonological rules. No Anglophone would ever recommend this over the correct form. --Romanophile (talk) 20:58, 2 April 2015 (UTC)

What do you mean? Presumably they would pronounce it somewhat like comprehensible. ---> Tooironic (talk) 13:08, 21 April 2015 (UTC)


I'm surprised we don't have this word. Am I missing something? ---> Tooironic (talk) 02:56, 3 April 2015 (UTC)


This entry gives me pain just thinking about it, I've tried to ignore it, but its a worm that eats away at me, forcing me to bring it up here.

Originaly the use of alternate as a synonym of alternative was marked as a common misuse, but after a series of editing skirmishes in the summer and autumn of 2009 (with US users, I presume, taking umbrage that anyone could consider their use as being wrong), and the battle to keep this marked as a misuse was lost. Since then unless you read the talkpage or check the diffs, someone consulting Wiktionary would not know that outside of the United States and to even to some in the US this is considered a wrong usage. I'm having to concede that this word has now been Humpty-dumptied, but at the least shouldn't it be marked that it was a previously common misuse which because of the prevalence of the misuse has become an accepted use; and to add a usage note that while generally accepted, in some areas e.g. in technical and science writing the distinctions remain even in the United States. (see Commonly Misused Words).--KTo288 (talk) 07:19, 3 April 2015 (UTC)

Because this is such a notorious "misuse", I think it would be helpful to retain a note that it is considered incorrect in the UK (by people who care about such things). Oxford Dictionaries: "This American use of alternate is still regarded as incorrect by many people in Britain." [1]

triftong & трифтонг

On the pronunciation of the Serbo-Croatian section, is it true that the word is pronounced as /trǐftonɡ/ not /trǐftoŋ/? Just not sure of it… --Malaysiaboy (talk) 13:21, 3 April 2015 (UTC)

True. Most Slavic languages lack sound /ŋ/. If I'm not mistaken, only Polish has it. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 13:32, 3 April 2015 (UTC)


"Pinyin: yīgè [Phonetic: yígè] → yīge (toneless final syllable variant)"

Assuming this is correct, when should we use yīgè, yígè, and yīge, respectively, in speech (outside of Wiktionary; "IRL") and in writing (when giving the pinyin for example sentences on Wiktionary)? The phonetic brackets are what confuse me, along with the added arrow pointing to yīge. --WikiWinters (talk) 13:57, 3 April 2015 (UTC)

When writing pinyin most people write it out strictly according to each syllable's original reading (without considering tone sandhi), i.e. yīgè. In real life we follow the sandhi of course and pronounce it as yígè. The reading yīge is a variant you will hear from time to time, like 知道 as zhīdao, etc. ---> Tooironic (talk) 23:59, 3 April 2015 (UTC)


Down in the crossword sense seems to be omitted as an adverb, but shown as a noun instead. I wanted to put a translation in, but there's nowhere to put it, unlike across. Donnanz (talk) 22:57, 3 April 2015 (UTC)

  • I dealt with it myself after a night's sleep. Donnanz (talk) 09:12, 4 April 2015 (UTC)


I edited the entry for ism and Mr. Granger rejected it. I suggested two alternative suggestions to make the definition of atheism more accurate in the -ism entry. He has rejected that suggestion and rejected the notion that there is reason to make this clarification. My assertion is that associating the term atheism with "a doctrine, ideology or principle", which the -ism entry does, is both inaccurate and damaging to the perception of atheists. Mr. Granger's main assertion is atheism " is associated with an ideology: the belief that there is no god". The lack of belief in a god is neither an ideology , in which the entry references "a body of beliefs" and not a single belief, nor a belief. It is a lack of belief. It is passive and descriptive. An ideology is assertive and prescriptive. My other assertions are in the discussion posted below, including how keeping the atheism reference in the ism entry without clarification is seriously damaging to the perception atheists. I look forward all input on this matter. —This unsigned comment was added by JohnAndrewMorrison (talkcontribs).

Edit of -ism

Discussion moved from User talk:Mr. Granger.

"there's no need to go into so much detail about which parts of the definition apply to which derived words"

How about a short note indicating there is no doctrine, ideology, or principle associated with atheism?

Maybe remove the term?

The definition perpetuates false beliefs and reinforces the stigma plaguing atheists. JohnAndrewMorrison (talk) 06:07, 31 March 2015 (UTC)

I don't see any reason to remove it—atheism is a good example of the usage of the suffix -ism. Moreover, atheism (at least sense 1) is associated with an ideology: the belief that there is no god. —Mr. Granger (talkcontribs) 11:50, 31 March 2015 (UTC)

Your identification of atheism being an ideology is exactly why the notation needs to be made. From Wiktionary: ideology - Doctrine, philosophy, body of beliefs or principles belonging to an individual or group. Not a single belief, or nonbelief as the case is, but a body of beliefs or a codified belief system. Saying atheism is an ideology implies things can be done in the name of atheism, but they can't. It allows blame for past acts of people (Hitler, Marx, Pol Pot) to be assigned to atheism when the fact is these people just happened to be atheist; they were driven to acts of violence by other ideologies (e.g. communism, socialism, naziism) or personal shortcomings, not because they were atheist. This is the negative stigma I refer to. —This unsigned comment was added by JohnAndrewMorrison (talkcontribs).

I disagree with several of the statements you've just made, and in particular with the idea that stating that the word atheism is sometimes used to refer to an ideology implies that Hitler was evil because he was an atheist. To reiterate my point, atheism (in the narrowest sense) refers to "a doctrine, ideology or principle" (per the relevant definition of -ism). If you disagree with this, I encourage you to bring it up in the WT:Tea room, where we can get the opinions of other editors. —Mr. Granger (talkcontribs) 23:37, 2 April 2015 (UTC)

Did you look at the definition of atheism here on Wiktionary? The only mention of doctrine is in the "loose" definition and says a lack of belief in a doctrine. "To reiterate my point, atheism (in the narrowest sense) refers to "a doctrine, ideology or principle" (per the relevant definition of -ism). " Is a circular argument, it is fallacious. You are saying the definition of atheism given in -ism is accurate because that is the way it is defined in -ism. You have completely made my point. If you compare the Wiktionary definition of atheism with the definition it is given in the -ism entry you have to conclude the -ism definition is wrong. I never said it was asserted that Hitler was evil because he was atheist. What is asserted is the claims are made that the atrocities he committed were in the name of atheism. You can disagree with my claim that atheism is used to assert the atrocities of Hitler, Pol Pot, Marx, etc., were done in the name of atheism, it is just an opinion. I have personal experience, more than a dozen people arguing this point with me, and demonstrable truth it is. Here is Aslan Reza, a recognized expert in religion wordwide, saying exactly this. It at 14:30 of this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HGBsmvRbpck. —This unsigned comment was added by JohnAndrewMorrison (talkcontribs).

I'm sorry, you seem to have mistaken this for a prescriptive, authoritative arbiter of what people are supposed to think. I hate to disillusion you, but this is a descriptive dictionary: we do our best to describe what people actually mean when they use a term, not what it's supposed to mean. We have terms used by everyone from Muslims, Jews, Christians, atheists, racists, thugs, etc. and words for more kinds of vile, disgusting and seriously wrong things and concepts than anyone would want to know. That's because we're not censored, either. You've come to Wiktionary to edit out concepts that you disagree with, and make them conform to your point of view. That's censorship, and it won't be tolerated. Chuck Entz (talk) 03:32, 4 April 2015 (UTC)

I am not asking to edit out anything. My original edit was simply the addition of a clarification. If anything it was my input that was being censored. Am I to understand I can add that sort of content? If so I have two questions: How does one avoid a circular loop of edit delete? And what is the proper way to add a clarification to a specific item on an entry? And just to be clear I do not have the intention of including everything included here supporting my position. Just a note that clarifies atheism is not a doctrine, ideology or principle. Thanks.

Mr. Granger removed a note specific to atheism. I agree with you that atheism is not an "ideology". Rather than adding a note, the definition needs a fix IMHO. A bit of digging in the revision history shows that this revision had "the result of a doctrine, ideology, principle, or lack thereof" in the definition. In diff, I have restored that state of affairs; see also my edit summary. --Dan Polansky (talk) 07:24, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
The issue of whether atheism is an ideology or not is an opinion, rather than a verifiable fact, and to some extent depends on what kind of atheism is being discussed (see Negative and positive atheism and Implicit and explicit atheism). Some atheists don't believe in God themselves but do not actively deny the existence of God, and don't particularly care what other people think. That kind of atheism is probably not an ideology. But other atheists (what I consider the Richard Dawkins-style atheists) actively deny the existence of God, and some of them work to persuade others to share their point of view, often with positively evangelical fervor. That kind of atheism is definitely an ideology; some would even call it a religion. And lots of other kinds of atheism exist along the spectrum between these two extremes. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 09:04, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
Active denial of the existence of God is not an ideology; it is a stance. Richard Dawkin's kind of atheism is not an ideology. --Dan Polansky (talk) 11:26, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
We define ideology as "Doctrine, philosophy, body of beliefs or principles belonging to an individual or group". That's a perfect definition of Dawkins's kind of atheism. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 17:05, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
This definition is wrong. It follows from it that the body of beliefs belonging to an individual is an ideology, which is obviously wrong. --Dan Polansky (talk) 17:43, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for the clarification above and for the reversion of the entry.

exhaust fan

Would this term meet Wiktionary's CFI? ---> Tooironic (talk) 08:44, 4 April 2015 (UTC)

It it's just an electrical device for moving air that is located in a system consisting of the parts of an engine through which burned gases or steam are discharged, then I'd say it's sum-of-parts and probably doesn't meet CFI. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 09:09, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
Err, I thought it was just the name of the fan thingy in my bathroom... have I got the wrong word? (Chinese-speakers: I'm translating 排風扇.) ---> Tooironic (talk) 10:10, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
That's called an extractor fan usually. Donnanz (talk) 10:13, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
Even if the thing in your bathroom is called an exhaust fan, it's still a fan for letting foul air out of a room through a register or pipe provided for the purpose. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 10:58, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
What is an exhaust fan? Where is it used? Like, is it some part of an exhaust system of a car? Do you have a picture? --Dan Polansky (talk) 11:25, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
See Google image search. (It's also the fan in a cooker hood) SemperBlotto (talk) 11:27, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
  • See exhaust fan at OneLook Dictionary Search for the several dictionaries and glossaries that include exhaust fan.
MWOnline, which does not include exhaust fan, has five definitions for exhaust (noun), including "an arrangement for removing fumes, dusts, or odors from an enclosure". That is more or less the definition in my idiolect, in which, as in MWOline, exhaust fan is SoP. DCDuring TALK 12:25, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
Even so, if this device has different names it may be worth an entry; exhaust fan, extractor fan and extraction fan can all be found on Google, and all mean the same thing. The SoP policy can be taken to extremes. Donnanz (talk) 12:43, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
Given that fan seems to generically imply a ventilator for "blow" ventilation, I think that all these terms seem to generically imply a fan working to "suck". This can often (usually?) mean a very different type of construction - centrifugal fans, vortex fans, venturi fans, helical fans, etc. -- ALGRIF talk 08:28, 5 April 2015 (UTC)
It not a unique construction that defines it. Its function is removing air instead of circulating air, i.e. a fan used to remove air from an enclosed space such as a bathroom or a stable. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 01:25, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
OK -Function it is. In my bathroom I have 2 fans. One is an extractor fan. (Function defines which fan I'm talikng about). Similarly, in my kitchen I have 2 fans. One is an extractor fan. (Function defines which fan I'm talikng about). In my new house I have several fans. One of them is an exhaust fan. (Function (whole-house air renovation) defines which fan I'm talking about.) -- ALGRIF talk 13:07, 8 April 2015 (UTC)
The worst joke I ever heard, BTW, had the punchline "he's an ex-tractor fan". I'd include all three in my dictionary. --Recónditos (talk) 20:49, 12 April 2015 (UTC)

What part of speech is callsigned?

It means "having (a specified name) as its call sign", e.g.

  • 2010, Ben Evans, Escaping the Bonds of Earth: The Fifties and the Sixties (page 43)
    As announced, the purpose of the missions by Nikolayev and Popovich, callsigned 'Falcon' and 'Golden Eagle', respectively, was to check "contact" between two spacecraft flying in similar orbits.

So not really an adjective, more like a passive verb form; however, there is no infinitive "to callsign". Equinox 21:29, 4 April 2015 (UTC)

I really don't know what English grammarians would categorise it as. To me, it feels like a participle doesn't necessarily need to have a verb, but that might not be a tenable idea. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 21:32, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
It seems to me to be functionally equivalent to named. We have that as an adjective (as well as a verb form). SemperBlotto (talk) 21:38, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
I think it looks like an adjective derived from a noun + -ed (sense 1 of etymology 3 of -ed). Is there a reason to think that it shouldn't be classified as an adjective? —Mr. Granger (talkcontribs) 22:00, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
It's not really different from any of the other English words formed by adding -ed to a noun (bearded, finned, eared). But many of the basic nouns that do this also have homophones that are verbs, which obscures the point. We just had a discussion about haired. DCDuring TALK 22:05, 4 April 2015 (UTC)
It's different in having an object- do adjectives have objects? The examples you give simply refer to the presence of the referent of the noun. In this case, the callsign isn't merely present, it's included in the sentence. This really looks like a passive construction with an indirect object. The absence of the infinitive doesn't mean much when you consider how scarce this is in Google Books and Google Groups- even Google Search. There doesn't seem to me to be any inherent reason to not have an infinitive, and there are indeed a couple of cases in Google Search where it appears as an active verb with a direct object. Chuck Entz (talk) 01:49, 5 April 2015 (UTC)
The term callsigning seems to exist, so maybe there actually is a verb. SemperBlotto (talk) 06:57, 5 April 2015 (UTC)

Pecha Kucha

Could somebody who knows Japanese fill out the etymology on this one? Kiwima (talk) 08:07, 5 April 2015 (UTC)

  • As far as the English term goes, it's pretty well filled out already. I expanded the Japanese entry at ぺちゃくちゃ (pechakucha), and I'll add a quick gloss to the term as referenced in the EN entry. ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │ Tala við mig 20:30, 8 April 2015 (UTC)


Hi. Anyone want to try for a good definition of leafy in this common type of phrasing? We are in a leafy rural area and still have children whose families depend on food banks. Something about relative wealth? Middle class? Economically comfortable? -- ALGRIF talk 08:14, 5 April 2015 (UTC)

  • It's already included, I think - containing much foliage - a leafy avenue. This can also apply to the sense you mention. It shouldn't really imply wealth. Donnanz (talk) 08:57, 5 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Poking around to see how it is used, I think a meaning of "suburban" or even "residential" might be more what you are after. The implication seems to be less about the wealth and more about the lack of industrial development. The relative wealth is probably just a correlate. Kiwima (talk) 00:55, 7 April 2015 (UTC)
  • I don't think a suburban or residential area would be called "leafy" unless it did in fact have plenty of foliage. Equinox 01:43, 7 April 2015 (UTC)
  • And another example today in the Guardian. [2] But Tory England is not all booming, leafy suburbia. I can't believe I'm the only one who sees a connotation here? "Leafy" referring to an idea that is something other than actual leaves. The journalist who wrote this was clearly not thinking about leaves. The piece is contrasting people who struggle to make ends meet, and others in the same area who are comfortable. -- ALGRIF talk 12:10, 7 May 2015 (UTC)
    Suburban and rural places have grass and trees. Cities don't. End of. DCDuring TALK 16:13, 7 May 2015 (UTC)
    I'm sitting in the middle of a city (Bristol) looking out at a row of trees, a muddy river with grassy banks, and another line of trees on the other side. SemperBlotto (talk) 16:26, 7 May 2015 (UTC)
    We don't deal in reality; we deal in the idealized typical of the past fifty or so years. If I were as rich as Croesus and had an apartment on Fifth Avenue or Central Park West, I would also see plenty of trees, albeit in a setting phony as a three-dollar bill: Central Park.
Seriously, any look at a metropolis on Google Earth makes it fairly clear that cities, even those with large parks, are hardly "leafy". DCDuring TALK 23:29, 7 May 2015 (UTC)
Usage rules. I would say "leafy suburbia" refers to places that are typically not big built-up cities (London) but rather smaller towns with grassy parks, avenues, etc. If you disagree that "leafy" means trees then bring the convincing proof. Equinox 23:07, 7 May 2015 (UTC)
Just look at the photo in the article. It is in Chingford, London suburbia, and it is a very built-up residential area. A few trees along the street, but tree-lined streets are found everywhere in cities. Whatever. Ignore the word "as it is used". I'm done here. -- ALGRIF talk 08:18, 8 May 2015 (UTC)
I found three citations that seem (to me) to be unambiguously referring to wealth or class, and I've added a definition to the article. This piece from Wales Online newspaper is also interesting:
The word leafy might be shorthand only used for the most wealthy of areas yet a pioneering survey has suggested it might not mean what we all think.
It basically makes explicit Algrif's point that a "leafy area" is not necessarily that green. Smurrayinchester (talk) 10:05, 11 June 2015 (UTC)


What's the difference with "instantly"? And why are there no mentions of (links to) the other? --Jerome Potts (talk) 11:29, 6 April 2015 (UTC)

The links aren't there now because you didn't put them there. DCDuring TALK 11:46, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
Okay, my question hid that i intend to, but i haven't decided how: "synonyms", or just "related terms" or similar? --Jerome Potts (talk) 11:51, 6 April 2015 (UTC)


Is this a real word in English? I came across it in a Chinese-English dictionary, a translation of 同志 apparently. ---> Tooironic (talk) 03:42, 7 April 2015 (UTC)

Apparently (though it looks obsolete): [3]. Equinox 03:44, 7 April 2015 (UTC)
Many thanks. ---> Tooironic (talk) 07:59, 9 April 2015 (UTC)


Is this an American term? I have never heard of it in British English, being used to the word brace and its derivative brace and bit. Donnanz (talk) 14:17, 7 April 2015 (UTC)


(Ctrl-X-V'd from RFV, because it was misplaced. Hillcrest98 (talk) 19:38, 7 April 2015 (UTC))

I don't understand the etymology. The page about the genus says that the genus name is derived straight from Latin alligator (one who ties or binds). The generic term's page is said to be derived from Spanish el lagarto, ultimately from Latin lacertus.

Is this a discrepancy, or perhaps a pair of false cognates? Hillcrest98 (talk) 23:28, 5 April 2015 (UTC)

Good catch. I'm fairly sure that Classical Latin "influenced" the spelling, but that the origin is via Spanish. I just hope I wasn't the guilty party for the Alligator etymology! I was. DCDuring TALK 23:42, 5 April 2015 (UTC)
Should I correct the etymology then? Hillcrest98 (talk) 23:50, 5 April 2015 (UTC)
Take a look at how I cleaned up my own mess. Make whatever changes you think are appropriate. The references in alligator are my sources, especially alligator in The Century Dictionary, The Century Co., New York, 1911. DCDuring TALK 23:56, 5 April 2015 (UTC)
That error sat there for more than two years. I hope it didn't make its way to Wikipedia itself. Hillcrest98 (talk) 00:10, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
It wasn't there when I just looked, anyway. Those online dictionaries that copy us may have the error, but one hopes they refresh their content from time to time.
This definitive French dictionary's entry for French alligator says the origin of the French word is English. DCDuring TALK 00:20, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
Etymology added for French word, but I accidentally put the wrong word in the edit summary, lol. Hillcrest98 (talk) 00:27, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
I've struck the heading as there's no RFV proposition being made. Renard Migrant (talk) 15:22, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
If you're only interested in attestation, why don't you create a page Wiktionary:Requests for attestation where people interested in that subtopic could gather. Of course, I could create a page Wiktionary:Requests for verification (except attestation requests), but that would be w:WP:POINTy, I think. -- 20:23, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
You have to ask DCDuring and other editors who opposed in Wiktionary:Votes/2012-01/Renaming requests for verification. I supported the renaming. A little bit of reasonableness, and more votes could actualy work, right? --Dan Polansky (talk) 20:36, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
Exactly, it got voted down (albeit with a majority in favor). Don't blame me for that, I voted for it, after all. Renard Migrant (talk) 14:39, 7 April 2015 (UTC)
  • The right venue would have been WT:ES (Etymology Scriptorium). Even WT:TR (Tea Room) would have been better. DCDuring TALK 19:57, 6 April 2015 (UTC)
    I think the original matter is settled. Is it? DCDuring TALK 19:57, 7 April 2015 (UTC)

Yep, the main problem (the etymology errors) have been corrected. Other errors can have another Tea discussion. Hillcrest98 (talk) 03:25, 8 April 2015 (UTC)

What errors would those be? DCDuring TALK 13:16, 8 April 2015 (UTC)
Whenever they show up in the future. Hillcrest98 (talk) 21:39, 9 April 2015 (UTC)

thread of life

At Clotho is a red link for thread of life. It is abundantly attestable in a sense close to that of the corresponding Ancient Greek term. I would argue that it is just a metaphor, not entryworthy. As thread of life at OneLook Dictionary Search suggests reference works don't find this entryworthy either.

Is this inclusion-worthy? Why or why not? DCDuring TALK 20:17, 7 April 2015 (UTC)

  • I've added a first attempt at a definition. Feel free to improve or whatever. SemperBlotto (talk) 20:43, 7 April 2015 (UTC)
    I guess that means you think it inclusion-worthy. Why? (Let me guess: "Because someone might want to know what it means.") DCDuring TALK 20:59, 7 April 2015 (UTC)
    Because of our slogan, of course: all turds and all baggages! Equinox 21:54, 7 April 2015 (UTC)
    Can we ban the word word from all discussions? DTLHS (talk) 22:07, 7 April 2015 (UTC)
    We've deemed similes inclusion-worthy, apparently all metaphors. Alliteration, rhyming, and other elements of prosody have been claimed to make MWEs into set phrases. Is there any rhetorical device that we might consider excluding? Allusion? Hendiadys? DCDuring TALK 22:31, 7 April 2015 (UTC)

traffic island

Definition says "...to control traffic". That strikes me as rather vague. Can we clarify this? ---> Tooironic (talk) 07:57, 9 April 2015 (UTC)

  • It marks a division between opposing flows of traffic, and often acts as a pedestrian refuge, when a pedestrian has to wait for a gap in the traffic. Donnanz (talk) 12:20, 9 April 2015 (UTC)
    When an entry is essentially encyclopedic, as this one is, a link to WP should be mandatory. I understand, too, that a picture (50Kb-5Mb) is worth only a thousand words (~16Kb), but we have trouble producing even 20 intelligible words (for a definition) that users are likely to read, so images have some value. At the very least it would make it easier to copy definitions, images, references, translations, etc. DCDuring TALK 13:12, 9 April 2015 (UTC)

façade versus facade

Why is façade treated as the main spelling? Even the spellcheck automatically changes facade to façade for some weird reason. It's spelt as facade in my Oxford hard copy, and the other spelling is ignored. Donnanz (talk) 12:30, 9 April 2015 (UTC)

Because of the perfect-typography lobby here. DCDuring TALK 12:56, 9 April 2015 (UTC)
Oh, maybe they should be called the over-perfect typography lobby. Does the spellcheck belong to the same lobby? Donnanz (talk) 13:02, 9 April 2015 (UTC)
Depends on the spellcheck. Of the ones I use, the UK one prefers façade over facade, and the US one prefers facade. In my own experience, people in the US understand façade, but don't use the ç because it's extra work to type. I've never seen any confusion regarding that spelling, except "why is façade spelled with a hooky thingie?" On the other hand, I've seen many instances of US people encountering "facade" and thinking it's an unfamiliar word pronounced fuh-KAYD and being surprised that it is in fact a word they know with a different pronunciation. Eishiya (talk) 12:11, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
The etymology gives the clue to why façade is preferred. It also rather depends on how you would normally pronounce --ca--. An educated person does not normally say that they are eduçated. Nor would anyone in fact ever pronounce a soft "c" before an "a", unless guided in some way to this very unusual pronunciation. Unless, of course, one is using US spelling setting on their spell checker. There's an easy fix to that though. -- ALGRIF talk 12:29, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
Just because it comes from French doesn't mean we have to spell it the same way in English, character for character. Then there's the problem of finding the character on a qwerty keyboard (unless you switch your keyboard over to French). Donnanz (talk) 16:57, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
Have to no. But it is historically and currently conventional. Just check through some other words and phrases that come from French, Spanish and others, that have been imported wholesale, including accents, into the English language. The fact that US have the habit of generally removing the accents later does not stop the original with-accent form from being the main spelling. Not unless it has become out-dated. -- ALGRIF talk 11:53, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
It's usually spelt facade in British English too. That's what I'm griping about. Donnanz (talk) 11:57, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
@Algrif: How does priority of a spelling make it the main spelling if frequency favors the later spelling? The original spelling may have a determined minority of users who favorite it, especially if they believe it signals their superiority to users of the newer spelling. BTW, having lower frequency may even enhance its value as a superiority marker. DCDuring TALK 15:24, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
@DCDuring: So, .. er .. by greater frequency ... er ... you mean ... become out-dated? - I think that is what I was saying. -- ALGRIF talk 16:20, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
"Outdated" does not necessarily have overall relative frequency implications and thus is hard to confirm. When we use "dated" here, we usually refer to the age cohort of the speakers who use a term. DCDuring TALK 18:46, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
It is because of diff from 4 July 2014, which has no edit summary. I disagree with that edit. --Dan Polansky (talk) 20:04, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
You may be interested in this revision, which has "Dictionary notes" showing which variant is in which dictionary. --Dan Polansky (talk) 20:08, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
Even the Wikipedia article is redirected from façade. Very interesting. Donnanz (talk) 20:42, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
I have restored facade to what is was before 4 July 2014. By the way, facade massively outperforms façade in Google Ngram Viewer but I do not know how reliable that is with these sorts of diacritics (façade, facade at Google Ngram Viewer). --Dan Polansky (talk) 20:47, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
Excellent! Thanks very much, I'm much happier now. Donnanz (talk) 21:03, 12 April 2015 (UTC)


In my attempts to translate a cheese label I have discovered that 1) the inflections given in the Wiktionary table may be wrong, and 2) we have no cheese-context meaning for the word. According to canoo.net the positive inflections should be spelled edl~ whereas Wiktionary gives it as edel~. Both sites agree on the comparative (edler~) and superlative (edelst~) forms.

Right on both counts (although "edel" is a pretty vague term when applied to food. It's just a peacocky way of saying "high quality, pure"). Made the changes. Smurrayinchester (talk) 20:16, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
I also asked about this at Wikipedia's Reference Desk. Apparently the edel~ form can be encountered but is obsolete/dated. Perhaps that could be noted in a usage note? SpinningSpark 20:59, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
Hi. Am not a linguist of any kind, just some German. When encountering "edel" with cheese and some other food involving mould, the "edel" usually ist not referring to the cheese itself, but to the mould, and unvariably (?) in the form of "Edelschimmel" (literally : noble mould). It is a word of its own, meaning any of a list of accepted species of mould, that not only not render food worthless or even venomenous, but instead even enhance the food in question - namely this and that cheese, wine, ham, salami and maybe other foods. It does not necessarily denote highest qualities, even the cheapest industrial Camembert is still covered in some sort of "Edelschimmel". See http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edelschimmel - a bit stumpy, that article. :( For wine compare : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noble_rot. So I think there should not really be a special cheese-/food- context at wiktionary: edel since Edelschimmel is an independent word in its own right, with a very specific meaning.
About the inflection table, it seems fine as it is now (was corrected?), any occurence of edel~ is most likely obsolete, or grotesquely bad poetry. well 18:34, 15 April 2015 (UTC)
The exact phrase that led to this (which I should probably have cited in the first place) was mit edlem Weiß – und Blauschimmel. The edlem declension was not in the entry at the time, hence the difficulty. As you say, the adjective refers to the mould, not the cheese, but in this case is not quite in the form of Edelschimmel. SpinningSpark 15:50, 16 April 2015 (UTC)

expression of surprise, contempt, outrage...

Some time ago, a user created a lot of English interjection entries, all identically defined as "expression of surprise, contempt, outrage, disgust, boredom, frustration". See [4]. In most or all cases, the definition is over-broad and could be usefully narrowed down. So anyone who's bored (disgusted, contemptuous, etc.) might like to take a look. Equinox 03:20, 11 April 2015 (UTC)

used to Verb isn't it?

I'm sure this is not the first time this entry has been discussed. It is marked with a "clean-up" request, but I'm blowed if I can find it. That aside, my beef is with the POS Adverb. The Etymology-2 indicates that it started as a verb form. The grammar is like a verb form also, -- followed by a verb in the infinitive - He used to be famous -- Negative - I didn't use to run. -- Interog - Did you use to run?. So, it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and sounds like a duck. So it's a DUCK VERB isn't it? -- ALGRIF talk 14:37, 11 April 2015 (UTC)

  • Yes, I think so (but I'm often wrong about grammar). I notice we are missing the literal usage "Words are used to convey meaning," SemperBlotto (talk) 14:42, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
That would be the past participle of the verb use in a passive voice, wouldn't it? -- ALGRIF talk 14:52, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
Yeah, that would be like having "eaten to" as an entry: "food is eaten to stop us being hungry": the "to" is an infinitive on the verb that follows, not an adverbial particle on the main one. Equinox 14:53, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
The "literal" usage is sum of parts and is not a fixed construction like "He used to V", which is why it's missing. The "literal" usage even gets the same stress/intonation pattern that other similar constructions get (e.g. "I walked to work"), while the "adverb" has a different pattern. Tthe fact that it's a fixed phrase is probably why it's listed as an adverb. It's being analysed as "used to" + VERB (a verb modified by an adverbial phrase "used to"), rather than as "used" + to VERB (a verb "used" taking another verb as its argument). It's a participle modifying a verb in this case, which makes it an adverb. I think both analyses are valid. The verb analysis makes more sense with the past tense version "did not use to X", the adverb analysis makes more sense with "did not used to", both of which are found among native speakers, some even use both past tense constructions. Eishiya (talk) 15:06, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
  • I am drawn by analysis of the modal-like similarities between used to, have to, got to, want to, ought to, supposed to, where the "to" is likened to a suffix - almost as a phrasal verb particle - which in turn leads to the common speech patterns usta, hafta, gotta, wanna, oughta, sposta. Under this analysis also, they are all considered to be verbs, not adverbs. -- ALGRIF talk 15:26, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
    Could someone find academic support for such a presentation? Lexicography is a conservative field in the grammatical aspects of presentation, so I would argue that we should take a vote.
I could be convinced that, say, the modal verb treatment of all or some of the words ending in ta and na (wanna, gunna/gonna) is appropriate. What are the tests for something being a modal verb? DCDuring TALK 17:52, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
I agree that we can possibly see a quasi-modal pattern here:-
have to and hafta, got to and gotta, ought to and oughta, supposed to and sposta all seem to refer to obligation, which is a typical modality of modal verbs. While used to and usta (habit in the past) is similar to would (habit in the past), and finally want to and wanna can be likened to the modal verb need. -- ALGRIF talk 12:09, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
Defective verb; doesn't conjugate at all. Renard Migrant (talk) 12:14, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
I really don’t understand why it is classified as an adverb now. You say she used to be a singer and she was once a singer. Used to clearly receives a tense and a person, just like any other auxiliary verb. — TAKASUGI Shinji (talk) 13:28, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
Plus, of course, it forms a fully grammatical sentence with just a pronoun: "Do you sing?" "I used to." It shares this feature with other modals - "I have.", "I must.", "I did.", "I have to." - but not with adverbs. You can't say *"I formerly" or *"I once", you have to stick an extra verb in there ("I formerly sang.", "I sang once."). Smurrayinchester (talk) 09:59, 13 April 2015 (UTC)
(supposed to on the other hand doesn't seem like a verb. *"I supposed to." is unidiomatic - it's "I am supposed to." got to acts like a verb in colloquial speech (to my ears, it sounds slightly American) - "I gotta get to the shops before they close" - but in more standard registers I think you'd always say "I have got to...") Smurrayinchester (talk) 10:07, 13 April 2015 (UTC)
While it's a tad bit harder to find academic material describing used to as a quasi-modal without going to a library, there are some good journeyman explanations of the topic. —JohnC5 19:36, 15 April 2015 (UTC)
I have changed it to a verb. — TAKASUGI Shinji (talk) 02:42, 6 May 2015 (UTC)


The current definition looks odd but I think it's right:

  1. (medicine) to rot

Here's an example:

le sang, s’il habunde trop, il engendre fievre continue qu’est semblable a effimere, causée de sang non putrifié
the blood, if it's too abundant, it causes a steady fever, similar to an ephemeral one, caused by un-putrefied blood.

I do believe when he wrote this in 1303 he actually meant 'to rot' though of course, we know that blood while still in the body cannot rot! That of course isn't a linguistic matter, it's an evidence matter.

Should there be a usage note, or else, what? Remove the medicine tag, leave it as is? Renard Migrant (talk) 15:33, 11 April 2015 (UTC)


We now have three senses of this verb, of which the second and third look like they're referring to the same thing, but neither of which fits the passages cited for them. I would guess that the correct definition would be something like chase or harass. Does anyone have sources that might shed some light on this? Chuck Entz (talk) 18:34, 11 April 2015 (UTC)

I think #2 and #3 are referring to the same, but novelists in the last half century seem to use it slightly different like #2 (those quotes are not yet added). I think chase or harass imply intention. I could see cannon noise chousing cattle and horses. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 18:48, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
I could see it going either way: either it started out as "chasing", with a subsense developing for the disturbance that would cause, or it could be that it started out as "disturbing", with a sense developing that uses the original meaning as a sort of playfully hyperbolic overtone to a more prosaic one, somewhat like one speaks of manhandling something into place. By the way, although you have a tendency to overdo things in a lot of cases, this one is just the sort of situation where having lots of examples on the citations page is very helpful. Chuck Entz (talk) 19:36, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
It is amusing that the noun can refer to the perpetrator, the victim, and the process or result of the process. DCDuring TALK 18:49, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
We're not really discussing the first sense. I wonder if they're even the same etymology?. Chuck Entz (talk) 19:36, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
I think, for the animal sense, something like the English Etymology of shoo from the German is more likely. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 19:50, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
Though that doesn't actually say that shoo is from German. Whenever an etymology says "compare", you should read that as "here's a similar term in another language- maybe it's related somehow". I would guess it's from some dialectal variant of chase, or there's some other term in some other language- I don't see how German "sch" could end up as English "ch" Chuck Entz (talk) 20:45, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
Given the Western US locus for the early citations of the "harass" sense (perhaps "agitate, unsettle"), one might suspect a Mexican origin, which might mean a sufficiently different spelling to require someone with good Mexican Spanish to help. DCDuring TALK 22:07, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
I took the liberty to split the verbs by etymology, one being shared by the noun. I don't see any good possibility for the etymologies being the same, though facts good prove me wrong. DCDuring TALK 22:15, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
  • 1998, Charlene Strickland, The Basics of Western Riding, page 127:
    Chouse. To chase cattle, also to exhaust them.
  • 2008, Win Blevins, Dictionary of the American West:
    CHOUSE To handle cattle roughly and stir them up.
    (also spelled chowse) DCDuring TALK 22:50, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
  • The definition can be confirmed in the Dictionary of American Regional English, which may also provide information useful for an etymology. DCDuring TALK 23:41, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
    DARE has "to persecute, annoy, especially to handle cattle roughly". They offer touse as a possible source. All other print slang dictionaries that I consulted had a similar definition, though usually limited to cattle. No other dictionary offered any etymological suggestions, except to reject chaus and to make it as distinct from the Turkish-derived words. Several referred to the alternative spelling chowse. DCDuring TALK 16:55, 13 April 2015 (UTC)

let's does not function as a contraction of let us

I'm sure the meaning of let's (1st person plural imperative marker) is not similar to the meaning of let us. I don't think the definition of let's is to be a contraction of let us anymore.


Let's go! (to command others in your "us" group to go); Let us go! (to ask a person outside the "us" group to allow the group to go, or to release the group)


I can't hurt him. (being unable to hurt him); I cannot hurt him. (same meaning.)

And other contractions. The difference in meaning between let's and let us is too stark to call the former a contraction of the latter. Even the article mentions such a usage contrast.

Let's being a contraction of let us should go in the etymology section instead. Hillcrest98 (talk) 14:44, 12 April 2015 (UTC)

I think that you're overlooking the fact that "let us go" has multiple possible structures: the one that's contracted is "let us" + "go", but the one you're referring to is "let go" with the object, "us", inserted within- in other words, "let go of us", rearranged. Only the first one has "let" and "us" closely associated enough to merge into a contraction. It's quite acceptable to say "let us go to the theater", but it sounds a bit dated- you may not be familiar with it. Chuck Entz (talk) 15:13, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
I added a usage note about let us being rather dated. Sadly, the entry let us is a lazy redirect. --Recónditos (talk) 20:53, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
I have classified it as a verb. — TAKASUGI Shinji (talk) 00:53, 14 April 2015 (UTC)
Let us go to the pub is a correct but archaic form of let's go to the pub. They're not strict synonyms because in this sense, let us is archaic and almost never used. I have heard it though. Renard Migrant (talk) 16:53, 16 April 2015 (UTC)
It's not completely gone. I hear it once in a long while, and not only from old people. --WikiTiki89 19:44, 16 April 2015 (UTC)
I've created it as archaic. If anyone wants to change to rare or dated, well, this is a wiki, go for it. Renard Migrant (talk) 20:15, 16 April 2015 (UTC)


"(transitive) To let or draw blood from an animal."

Can it not be used for people then? I was looking for the English translation of Old French saignier in the sense of 'to remove blood from someone (as a medical procedure)'. I thought 'bleed' was perfectly adequate, but according to our definition, only if it refers to an animal. Renard Migrant (talk) 16:47, 13 April 2015 (UTC)

Bloodlet actually says 'to bleed' which unless I'm missing something, implies that 'bloodlet' only applies to animals. Renard Migrant (talk) 16:48, 13 April 2015 (UTC)
bleed at OneLook Dictionary Search. DCDuring TALK 18:21, 13 April 2015 (UTC)
google books:"bleed the patient" and google books:"bled the patient" give plenty of hits that don't look veterinary to me. On the other hand, humans are animals, so the current definition could still be considered accurate. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 18:50, 13 April 2015 (UTC)
The definition is actually worded for an intransitive verb as the definition specifies the object. Simply omitting the wrongly included nominal "an animal" would solve the problem. DCDuring TALK 00:31, 14 April 2015 (UTC)


Very concerned about the citations here. All three are pretty much gibberish. The top one seems to be full of invented Anglo-Saxonisms; the second one is written, I think, by a schizophrenic -- I have encountered this person's vanity-published "works" previously on Google Books (he may be the same author as "Hymie Hitler") and they consist of disjointed rants with made-up words and long strings of synonyms -- and I'm not sure about the third citation, but it seems to have lots of words erroneously blended together. I am also concerned about the citing user who continues to create such bizarre words without thinking twice or at least flagging them as nonstandard. Imagine the confusing impression we are giving to learners of English, with such entries. Equinox 19:11, 13 April 2015 (UTC)

Gibberish yes, but literary gibberish. One of the authors has a WP article. The subject of another has a WP article. It's not easy to find other citations. There may be a children's book citation to be had. The writing has that "poetic" quality that disqualifies much poetry as not good for determining meaning. DCDuring TALK 22:06, 13 April 2015 (UTC)
This is straight out of Century dictionary. No one is creating anything, except an entry for this word. Leasnam (talk) 00:59, 14 April 2015 (UTC)
It strikes me as the kind of word for which our best service to both users and translators would be to direct them to synonyms. DCDuring TALK 01:18, 14 April 2015 (UTC)
More Leasnam cause for concern: [5]. Has everything got to be Middle English?! Otherkin are a very modern phenomenon. Equinox 00:14, 18 April 2015 (UTC)
Otherkin in the modern sense are, yes; but the word is probably much older and represents an application of an old term to a new concept. Other + kin doesn't make any sense on its own as a recent coinage. However, when someone familiar with Middle English wishes to name his new concept using an older word he came across one day and thinks is cool, he can do so. Happens all the time. We have to allow for the fact that English speakers have access to, have interest in, and are familiar with older English writings (E.M.E; M.E.; O.E.), and an old word can re-emerge tagged to a new concept at any time...As far as the previous Etymology was concerned, something along the lines of borrowed from Middle English otherkin might have been clearer to not give the impression that the word had remained in the language all during that time. Leasnam (talk) 15:32, 22 June 2015 (UTC)


The entry shows:

(archaic) A taxonomic genus within the family Felidae — Felis chaus chaus, the type subspecies of jungle cat.

This is incorrect; Chous is not a current genus. The {{taxon}} template does not have a toggle to show that the classification is a deprecated and currently invalid classification. Something similar was brought up by @DCDuring: in 2012 (Template talk:taxon#What about obsolete taxa, less-used synonyms?) but I do not find the resolution by searching the site. There should be a separate template, something like:

(archaic) A deprecated taxonomic classification, formerly a AAAA within the BBBB CCCC — its reclassification is XXXX.

BoBoMisiu (talk) 01:29, 15 April 2015 (UTC)

I changed the context from "archaic" to "obsolete": nobody uses the generic name in order to sound old-fashioned, and no one uses it at all unless they're reading from or referring to an old taxonomic work. This is more like phlogiston than thee or thou. As for your version: way too wordy. I would be satisfied if the template just put "former" in front of the obsolete taxon and in front of any obsolete parent taxon. It wouldn't be too hard to have parameters named something like "obstax" and "obspar" to make that word appear in the proper places.Chuck Entz (talk) 02:36, 15 April 2015 (UTC)
Obsolete is probably better for the definition we have. Any reuse of the name is likely to be with a different definition.
I don't think we are likely to be keeping up to date on deprecation of taxonomic names: Neither Wikispecies nor WP do very well at it.
Before we do a change in the template, let's give a little thought to how we can avoid conveying the idea that we are a reliable source of information. Careful wording in the template might help, but losing flexibility may hurt.
It is very hard to find any source of taxonomic information that claims to be a definitive source of current taxonomic names. They usually have disclaimers explicitly warning against relying on them. That's one reason I try to make sure we have a lot of external links for taxonomic names that seem to be current. Obsolete names can use links to old dictionaries (eg, Century 1911), the Plant List, and to articles for any corresponding current taxa, which should have links to sources with synonyms. DCDuring TALK 03:12, 15 April 2015 (UTC)
When I first read (archaic) {{taxon}}, while already knowing that (archaic) is {{context}}, I was confused by the definition since I followed a link from Chaus. I later saw that jungle cat was the common element but not taxonomic genus within the family Felidae. @Chuck Entz, DCDuring: former would be the broadest term and I think that template description should suggest to preferably link the newer entry. Maybe including the longer version of newer names (with the scientist name and date, see Author citation (zoology)), {{l|mul|Felis chaus|Felis chaus Schreber, 1777}}: now more commonly classified as Felis chaus Schreber, 1777. The template description can provide instructions about how to find the information, for example, at Encyclopedia of Life and Integrated Taxonomic Information System. I was also confused by the lack of a link to the current Felis chaus species but one to the trinomial name of the type subspecies, while I understand the reasoning. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 15:19, 15 April 2015 (UTC), modified 15:25, 15 April 2015 (UTC)
It was confusing because I had given up on making it better. I have attempted to improve it based on Century 1911 and a cursory examination of some entries using the term in the Global Biodiversity Heritage Library. AFAICT, the genus name is attributable to Gray, well after the coinage asserted in the etymology. DCDuring TALK 01:57, 16 April 2015 (UTC)
The problem with linking to "the" newer entry is that old and new taxa often don't correspond in neat one-to-one fashion. What Linnaeus may have described as a genus might be equivalent to parts of several families (even phyla!), with the species he described having been shuttled around numerous times before ending up in a multitude of different places. There are also plenty of cases where a name is misapplied to a different taxon and becomes widely used both in floras and in popular works, but is still used for the original one as well. There are even cases where it's really hard to tell what the old name actually referred to- if it referred to anything even slightly based in reality at all. Yes, there are many cut-and-dried cases where there's only one unambiguous successor (usually with preoccupied names), but having the option creates pressure to oversimplify things so the template can be used. Chuck Entz (talk) 03:06, 16 April 2015 (UTC)
@Chuck Entz, DCDuring: I agree with both you. There were about 20 classification schemas since Linnaeus, while that is historical, a set of living things (old entry) had a classification that is different now (new entry or entries). If I am looking for the term that represents that set I certainly would want to know that.
From anther direction, a definition of Pluto should include its previous classification of planet, prior to 2006, and current classification of a plutoid, a type of dwarf planet, and include dwarf planet, trans-Neptunian object, plutoid, Kuiper belt object, Plutino as hypernyms.
Stating that something is in a set is descriptive and not prescriptive – the authoritative source prescribes and wiktionary describes what was prescribed.
I would also want to know if the that set of living things is now an empty set. Linking to the newer convention is just a matter of finding the newer attestations of usage – three if I remember... so the vertical difference in level does not matter; what matters is what term represents that set of living things.
I also think there should be a standard usage note boilerplate template to clarify that an entry title is a former/obsolete classification that is now an invalid classification. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 13:54, 16 April 2015 (UTC)
@Chuck Entz: I know what you mean about the pressure having a template, especially with numbered parameters, creates to make one's view of reality conform to the template. The more work the template does, the more the pressure.
@BoBoMisiu: Even simple terms like iron are problematic in an analogous way. A definition in accordance with contemporary science is not the same as one used by scientists of the 18th century, let alone earlier centuries, let alone folks working in iron-using industries either now or earlier, let alone ordinary humans now or earlier.
@Chuck Entz, BoBoMisiu: I think we need to be realistically modest, especially in our near-term ambitions. We already provide alternative definitions in some cases and Usage notes or alternative hyponyms and hypernyms lists for alternative circumscriptions and placements, usually reflecting recent changes or controversies. Perhaps our definitions of older taxonomic terms (pre-Codes?) need a template with only named, not numbered, parameters that facilitate applicable categorization and otherwise ease entry, but allow for more flexibility. Or perhaps we need to add some categories and associated parameters 1 and 2 for template {{taxon}} that generate looser category membership and less specific wording to cover the range of definitions that may have been in use, especially in pre-Codes usage. If we insist on having an idealized vision of having all possible taxonomic definitions ever used, we can view such definitions as placeholders, creating lists of taxonomic entries that require historical research to generate multiple subsenses of the definitions that we can produce now, as corrected over time. DCDuring TALK 15:30, 16 April 2015 (UTC)
@Chuck Entz, DCDuring: Structured data and ontology is the reality on the internet (see schema.org), using a controlled vocabulary to write definitions that have metadata (data about the content) is a good thing to do. Schema.org has replacee and replacer properties of things which describes an old object and a new object. It is true that iron are problematic in an analogous way. A definition in accordance with contemporary science is not the same as one used by scientists of the 18th century, let alone earlier centuries, let alone folks working in iron-using industries either now or earlier, let alone ordinary humans now or earlier. They are only different senses with different definitions and attestations, that is nothing outside the domain of a dictionary. The controlled vocabulary of templates help contributors, especially new contributors, to write standardized definitions about things that are standardized in the real world (which prescribes many taxonomies and categories of things). These are different than either phlogiston or thee or thou since, for example, animals are both substantive and not pronouns. They are physical things. There is no need to write a chain of classification changes in the template.
Maybe a solution would be to have a version of Wikipedia's Template:Authority control but that points to external name authority files in Integrated Taxonomic Information System for example. Users will see that the entry is about something that has an authoritative name and is not a colloquial or obsolete name. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 16:45, 16 April 2015 (UTC)
Too bad there is no single authoritative control over old names or names in current controversy. There is also very little authority in suprageneric names. In any event our presumed potential strength relative to the other entities that cover taxonomic names is not in being systematic, but in establishing correspondences between taxonomic names and ordinary languages, whether in etymologies, vernacular names, or derived terms (as those in chemistry that are taxon-based). I would venture that if there ever is a single definitive source covering all taxonomic names, it will not be us, WP, WikiSpecies, or WikiData. Further I would venture that definitive data will not exist neither for terms in current controversies (obviously no basis for authoritative decision) nor for older terms (more like normal language than contemporary taxa). DCDuring TALK 23:06, 16 April 2015 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────@DCDuring: that's the benefit of a version of Wikipedia's Template:Authority control, it lists multiple authorities, it may have one authority or several. The entry isn't restricted to one external name authority file.

What about:

  1. On the sense line of "sense that is being replaced" add a wrapper of {{deftempboiler}} that includes boilerplate "former classification superseded by", if {{deftempboiler}} had |id=string added
  2. On the sense line of "sense that replaces" add a {{senseid|lang|string}}


  • {{cx|obsolete|lang=mul}} {{taxon|genus|family|Felidae|aquatic cats resembling {{taxlink|Felis chaus chaus|species|noshow=1}}, the type subspecies of jungle cat}}

informs the reader that the sense is no longer in use, but doesn't inform that the definition itself is deprecated. Also {{taxlink|Felis chaus chaus|species|noshow=1}} points to a subspecies and not the species Felis chaus (known as synonymously as "Felis chaus Guldenstaedt, 1776" and "Felis chaus Schreber, 1777"). —BoBoMisiu (talk) 16:38, 17 April 2015 (UTC)

  • @BoBoMisiu: Why don't we start by making the text for [[Chaus]] read as you would propose to do it, without new templates, even deleting existing templates if they interfere.
Almost anything can be implemented in templates, especially with Lua, but we need the talent willing and able to do it. We also need for the result to be acceptable, preferably agreed to by all interested parties, if not necessarily requiring a vote. DCDuring TALK 16:54, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
@DCDuring: see my suggestion at Talk:Chaus. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 21:44, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
@BoBoMisiu: re:"Structured data and ontology is the reality on the internet". I'm more concerned with the reality in the real world. re:"...animals are both substantive and not pronouns. They are physical things. There is no need to write a chain of classification changes in the template." Animals are real things, but their classifications- by definition- are abstractions. The literature is full of cases where characteristics were used to distinguish between taxa that turned out to be meaningless for taxonomic purposes. Look at the Edentata, for instance. Taxonomists have a bunch of standard terms that capture some of what might be termed "the fog of taxonomy": nomen nudum, nomen ambiguum, pro parte, misapplied, sensu, auctorum, etc.. The last one is particularly deadly to your proposals: someone (we often don't know who, exactly) decides that a particular published name applies to specimens they've seen, so they cite that name in their work. Everybody else assumes that's the name for the the thing and uses it in their work- until someone takes a look at the type specimen for that name and realizes it doesn't match the taxon the name is being used for. You see such cases cited in synonomies as "Foo bar auct., not Foo bar L.". What's the authority control for "everybody knows that ..."?
Another point of yours I'd like to address. re: "There were about 20 classification schemas since Linnaeus". That's not the way taxonomy works. Yes, there are grand, all-encompassing systems of everything, but they're merely syntheses of the real work, which consists of species descriptions and monographs on genera, families, and other smaller taxonomic groups. More often than not, no two monographs on a group agree in all the details as to the makeup of the group. You also have to realize that the life sciences have grown to the point that no one person can master everything, with some families such as the w:Ichneumonidae being so complex that it takes decades to get to the level to do any serious taxonomic work. Taxonomists spend a lot of their time reading through the literature and trying to sort out what previous workers meant when they used various taxonomic names. If you think it can all be neatly summarized to fit into the parameters of a template, you're very much mistaken. Sometimes, yes, but often not- and it's not always obvious which is which. Chuck Entz (talk) 04:47, 18 April 2015 (UTC)
@Chuck Entz: You are arguing for the same thing that I am. A dictionary doesn't capture  'the fog of taxonomy' , it describes in several words what others prescribe.
  • there are various taxonomies online
  • a wiktionary sense line about a taxon has a subject (the taxon) which it represents in several words
  • a taxon is given a formal name within various taxonomies
  • a taxon formal name may change
  • a taxon is given an ID number within various taxonomies
  • those IDs are cross-referenced (unique name assumption)
  • a wiktionary sense line should reference those arrangements (which is that ID)
  • a wiktionary sense line should inform the reader that it (the sense line) references those arrangements and is the same as the cross-reference (which is that ID bound to both).

The last one is particularly deadly to your proposals: someone (we often don't know who, exactly) decides that a particular published name applies to specimens they've seen, so they cite that name in their work. Everybody else assumes that's the name for the the thing and uses it in their work- until someone takes a look at the type specimen for that name and realizes it doesn't match the taxon the name is being used for. You see such cases cited in synonomies as "Foo bar auct., not Foo bar L.". What's the authority control for "everybody knows that ..."?

Yet people continue to refine and regroup sets of living things – and continue to clarify for their readers that what was previously attested to as Foo bar L. is more recently attested to as Foo bar auct. That is what a wiktionary sense line should also do.
In wiktionary, the authority control for 'everybody knows that ...'  is three attestations of usage — which is neither here nor there, unless those attestations attest to a relationship within those external name authority files. The point is that the IDs can be cross-referenced, and even the taxon that  'everybody knows that ...'  eventually, if valid, is assigned an ID that can be cross-referenced.

they're merely syntheses of the real work, which consists of species descriptions and monographs on genera, families, and other smaller taxonomic groups. More often than not, no two monographs on a group agree in all the details as to the makeup of the group. You also have to realize that the life sciences have grown to the point that no one person can master everything, with some families such as the w:Ichneumonidae being so complex that it takes decades to get to the level to do any serious taxonomic work. Taxonomists spend a lot of their time reading through the literature and trying to sort out what previous workers meant when they used various taxonomic names. If you think it can all be neatly summarized to fit into the parameters of a template, you're very much mistaken.

I agree, Life is complex. I believe a wiktionary reader would want to know what is a factual sense line. Yes, a taxon is merely syntheses of the real work, only describing information, and not the monographs of the real work. Only a simpleton would not admit that knowledge of the world is incomplete. A definition, of a sense of a term, is conveying meaning in just several words – it is a synthesis. That synthesis should state that the sense of a term is a deprecated taxonomic classification (to answer "what was it?"), and should state what it is (to answer "what is it?").
A cross-reference is an open-world assumption in these cases. Stating that something was once valid and but is no longer valid is not an innovation and happens often.
You say, If you think it can all be neatly summarized to fit into the parameters of a template, you're very much mistaken.
I say, a wiktionary sense line about a taxon should represent it in several words and a template standardizes what those several words are, so even a new contributor can add the information by following the template instructions. And, the references, for that sense, should point to reliable information elsewhere. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 15:49, 18 April 2015 (UTC)
You misunderstand me: There are some things that simply can't be summarized that way. It may take a very general verbal description, it may take a usage note, or it may take a link to encyclopedic sources that explain it more fully. Let's take a really extreme example: Linnaeus' taxon w:Vermes. Arthropods were classified as Insecta (Insecta Aptera contained things like lice, spiders, and lobsters), and every other invertebrate was classified as Vermes. That means everything in the animal kingdom without a backbone or a segmented exoskeleton, from single-celled organisms to hagfish, as well as other motile organisms now classified in other kingdoms. Just listing the phyla included in the concept would be too much for a definition line, and I suspect it included larval forms, etc. whose association with taxa not classified in Vermes was unknown at the time. This is a good example of a w:Wastebasket taxon, which is used to include things that don't fit anywhere else in the classification. Eventually taxonomists refine the classification to the point that the members of these taxa get distributed hither and yon, resulting in long lists of current containing taxa. Then there are cases where many species have variation in a particular characteristic, and someone erroneously decides to use that characteristic in classification. That means that the obsolete taxa can't be matched with current taxa: there might be individuals with, (hypothetically) big mandibles in several species, and individuals with small mandibles in those same species, and someone describes a big-mandible species and a small-mandible species. The big-mandible species corresponds to all the species that have this variation, but so does the small-mandible species. Using your template would obscure the reality of the situation with long, identical lists for both obsolete species. There are also species based on larval forms of existing species, and even on detached appendages of existing species (see w:Hectocotylus). Besides, figuring out the equivalence between an obsolete taxon and current ones is often very difficult, and often requires considerable research in various taxonomic databases. There are, indeed, cases where the current equivalents to an obsolete taxon are a subject of dispute among taxonomists, with no real established consensus. A dedicated template for this implies a level of expertise that's not always there, and increases the temptation to use the first answer found, whether it's reliable or not. I'd rather not have us create one. Chuck Entz (talk) 18:18, 18 April 2015 (UTC)
Even {{taxon}} creates pressures to fill the first three numbered slots, when the facts are more complex. There are many cases where alternative placements differ principally, sometimes only, in rank (and suffix). Labels such as archaic, obsolete, and dated are a start, but more may be required. Usage notes allow for more flexibility, but reference to a good WP article is much better. For a time there was a generic warning about circumscription (and placement, AFAICR). Perhaps we need more labels, some of which link to an appendix on taxonomic names that explains complications such as those Chuck mentions. It would not be an easy appendix to write, but perhaps we can cover some common cases, however imperfectly. Labels could also serve to draw attention to entries that would benefit from a particular type of improvement. For example, there may be current controversy likely to be resolved in, say five years. Or there may be broad consensus that a given high-level taxon is not monophyletic or has woefully erroneous taxonomy or that the fossil members are particularly uncertain in placement. DCDuring TALK 23:19, 18 April 2015 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────@Chuck Entz:I sat on this for several days and did some searches. While it is true that There are some things that simply can't be summarized that way, it is also true that such a single use of template would not need to solve every case. The template could be used multiple times to show what a deprecated taxon is reclassified now.

It may take a very general verbal description, it may take a usage note, or it may take a link to encyclopedic sources that explain it more fully.

Yes, a supplement to such a template could add clarification and references.

Linnaeus' taxon w:Vermes. [] and every other invertebrate was classified as Vermes.

Using a single instance of such a template may not be adequate in every case. A template can used more than once in an definition. That is true of every specialized template.

That means everything in the animal kingdom without a backbone or a segmented exoskeleton, from single-celled organisms to hagfish, as well as other motile organisms now classified in other kingdoms.

So what. That is the point of the discussion about how to to describe that a set of living things (old entry) is classified different now (new entry or entries).

Just listing the phyla included in the concept would be too much for a definition line, and I suspect it included larval forms, etc. whose association with taxa not classified in Vermes was unknown at the time.

Unfortunately Vermes is not to be found in wiktionary so we can't improve it together. Do you have an example found in wiktionary?

This is a good example of a w:Wastebasket taxon,

Yes, and those cases the definition should describe that others prescribe it as a wastebasket taxon – with reliable references.

Eventually taxonomists refine the classification to the point that the members of these taxa get distributed hither and yon, resulting in long lists of current containing taxa.

In other words, lists of terms with definitions...

That there are cases where many species have variation in a particular characteristic, and someone erroneously decides to use that characteristic in classification.

That is the point of a definition to describe that a set of living things (old entry) is classified different now (new entry or entries).

That means that the obsolete taxa can't be matched with current taxa: there might be individuals with, (hypothetically) big mandibles in several species, and individuals with small mandibles in those same species, and someone describes a big-mandible species and a small-mandible species.

Again, that is the point of a definition to describe that a set of living things (old entry) is classified different now (new entry or entries).

The big-mandible species corresponds to all the species that have this variation, but so does the small-mandible species.

Wiktionary does not prescribe. If both are classified the same now (same new entry) then both deprecated definitions point to the same new entry. That is nothing unusual.

Using your template would obscure the reality of the situation with long, identical lists for both obsolete species.

Dictionaries provide definitions about different senses, sometimes they are long lists. With such a template they would be lists with each sense wrapped in the template. The long is there with and without a template.

There are also species based on larval forms of existing species, and even on detached appendages of existing species (see w:Hectocotylus).

Even in those cases, I would want to read a definition that describes what others prescribe, i.e. that it is
(archaic) A deprecated taxonomic classification, formerly a AAAA within the BBBB CCCC — its reclassification is XXXX.

Besides, figuring out the equivalence between an obsolete taxon and current ones is often very difficult, and often requires considerable research in various taxonomic databases.

Yes! Providing a reader with good reliable information takes effort. I would rather read a dictionary entry about a taxon that is reliable and fact based, and not just a list of attested usages.

There are, indeed, cases where the current equivalents to an obsolete taxon are a subject of dispute among taxonomists, with no real established consensus.

There is, nevertheless, in those cases a pattern that a template can structure. In those cases, a template describes that a set of living things (old entry) is no longer valid and has a classification that is different now (new entry or entries) – fully referenced to the prescribing authority. The lack of consensus is content for a usage note that links to content about the dispute among taxonomists.

A dedicated template for this implies a level of expertise that's not always there, and increases the temptation to use the first answer found, whether it's reliable or not.

I agree, all content added to wiktionary, that is not usage, should be fully referenced to reliable sources. That is what is currently missing in the culture, and an issue with aesthetic opponents of those brutish reference numbers. A template does not change poor quality content masquerading with a level of expertise that's not always there. A template promotes structure and not the temptation to use the first answer found.

@DCDuring: an appendix would be good to have. Since there may be current controversy likely to be resolved in, say five years, a template that wraps the particulars would be pretty good future proofing. Like I wrote above, "a template standardizes what those several words are, so even a new contributor can add the information by following the template instructions." —BoBoMisiu (talk) 17:38, 27 April 2015 (UTC)


Do the noun and verb really have different etymologies? Under which one should we add the interjection (useful for translations)? SemperBlotto (talk) 06:46, 15 April 2015 (UTC)

This is a problem for a lot of terms from Old English - see also claw, heat, cool, drink, etc. I'm personally in favour of merging the etymologies, as is done at drop and dream. Smurrayinchester (talk) 07:40, 15 April 2015 (UTC)
(Although if we don't merge, presumably the verb would make more sense. The interjection is basically the imperative, right? "Help (me)!", rather than "(Give) help!" Smurrayinchester (talk) 13:47, 15 April 2015 (UTC))
I too think the interjection is actually the verb help. In general, I wonder whether terms with two etymologies where the second one is 'from the noun {{PAGENAME}}', whether than should just be merged into the first etymology and appended with 'the verb is derived from the noun', which is what I would do. Renard Migrant (talk) 16:55, 16 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Agree that the etymologies are identical.... it's just inflection. Hillcrest98 (talk) 01:09, 17 April 2015 (UTC)

Jaffa cake

Just because something is commonly eaten in the UK, does it make the term itself British English? Wouldn't that be like calling bear claw or creamed corn American English? ---> Tooironic (talk) 14:28, 15 April 2015 (UTC)

  • Possibly (but my local Waitrose supermarket (in the UK) sells both bear claws (nice) and tins of creamed corn (yuk)). SemperBlotto (talk) 14:30, 15 April 2015 (UTC)
  • I suspect the tag was added due to confusion over what context labels indicate: they indicate that usage of a term is restricted to a certain context ("only Brits use this word"), whereas some people think they just indicate that the term pertains to a certain topic ("these cakes are British"). Off-topic: "LGBT" is so frequently misused in this way that a while ago I gave up on fixing it and have even occasionally misused it that way myself. As you note, even non-Brits may refer to British-produced things... but do non-Brits speak of Jaffa cakes? I guess: I can find several US-based, Australian-based and NZ-based stores whose websites say they sell Jaffa cakes. I suppose the thing to do is to remove the "chiefly UK" context tag and indicate the Britishness of the cakes inside the definition, by adding "...which originated in Britain" or the like. - -sche (discuss) 16:19, 15 April 2015 (UTC)
    • You can expect most people in the UK to at least have an idea of what Jaffa cakes are. In the US, that is not the case; it's very rare to find someone who knows of them, even though technically they can be found there. I suspect it's similar for other English-speaking nations. The term is not restricted to UK English, but it is much more widely understood there than elsewhere - I think "chiefly UK" describes that situation pretty well. Eishiya (talk) 14:36, 16 April 2015 (UTC)
In case it hits RFV: this is a popular branded thing, perhaps similar to "Twinkie" in the US. It was famously the subject of a legal case (over import taxes) regarding whether it was technically a cake or a biscuit. Equinox 00:11, 18 April 2015 (UTC)


What does tip mean in phrases like "beef tips over rice", "chicken tips", etc? "Small piece"? Does our entry cover this? - -sche (discuss) 16:19, 15 April 2015 (UTC)

Beef tips are made from the trimmings of other cuts. Chicken tips I'm not so sure about, but I suspect it's similar. I think they both, more-or-less fit with the first definition (the extreme end).Kiwima (talk) 20:45, 15 April 2015 (UTC)
I can also find "pork tips" and "turkey tips" and "marinated alligator tips". At least some references say "beef tips" are cut from the "tri-tip" of a cow, which is not the extreme end of the cow (the round is further back). I do think a culinary sense is needed to clarify matters. - -sche (discuss) 21:26, 15 April 2015 (UTC)



Is it just me or does the U.S. pronunciation sample sound like it's actually the U.K. one?

You're right. I'm fixing the U.S. pronunciation information now. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 20:41, 16 April 2015 (UTC)

chill, chilling

I think we are missing a sense here - "censorship chills public discourse" or "censorship has a chilling effect on public discourse". Can anyone help? ---> Tooironic (talk) 02:12, 17 April 2015 (UTC)

Never heard of it, what does it mean? Renard Migrant (talk) 16:50, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
chilling effect at OneLook Dictionary Search (chilling effect) shows the phrase that is the etymological source of the sense. It was originally used in a metaphorical sense in the context of the effect of the threat of libel suits on press coverage of public figures in the US, but now had probably become lexicalized in the metaphorical sense topically in the areas of journalism and law in the US but is recognizable for at least the college-educated and readers of high-brow newspapers.
Most modern real dictionaries have "depress" and/or "discourage" as senses or subsenses of the transitive verb chill. DCDuring TALK 17:34, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
Even Webster 1913 had "To check enthusiasm or warmth of feeling of; to depress; to discourage." and MWOnline has "dispirit". DCDuring TALK 17:37, 17 April 2015 (UTC)

lượng từ

@Fumiko Take, Wyang User:Hippietrail has flagged for attention my entry with a comment. Please comment and/or fix if it's incorrect. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 05:59, 17 April 2015 (UTC)

I was told it's incorrect by a native Vietnamese speaker on Quora. I'll dig it up and put the link in here. I realize native speaker intuitions are not always accurate, especially for grammar and linguistics terms if they haven't studied those fields. Thanks for taking a look! — hippietrail (talk) 06:02, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
You're welcome. I found the word by digging it up on the web and from not so reliable dictionaries, so it may as well be incorrect. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 06:11, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
Di they advice about the correct term, in their opinion? --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 06:12, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
They did but it seemed more like a SOP phrase and wasn't in the (admittedly mostly crap) dictionaries I checked. Let me find it ... — hippietrail (talk) 06:18, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
They recommended "danh từ chỉ đơn vị", and you can see the relevant part of the thread on Quora here.hippietrail (talk) 06:21, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
Well, thats' broken up as (just made entry for "đơn vị"): danh từ + chỉ + đơn vị (Hán tự: 名詞單位) - "noun pointing unit" or "unit pointing to noun" (or something like that). I think there should be a more standard term. I won't be surprised if Sino-Vietnamese term danh từ (名詞) is used. From the discussion it seems the person doesn't know or doesn't understand you. Classifiers/counters/measure words are way too common in Vietnamese, they are often mistakenly considered part of the lemma (I fell into this trap too before). Online dictionaries often list translations of nouns with classifiers. So, a "frog" is not listed as ếch or ngoé but "con ếch" and "con ngoé" but they are not lemmas. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 06:38, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
danh từ chỉ đơn vị is what they have used on vi:w:Ngữ_pháp_tiếng_Việt#Danh từ chỉ đơn vị. —Stephen (Talk) 07:13, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, Stephen. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 07:19, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
Hmm given that should we consider it as a set technical term therefore warranting an entry here, or as one of a number of possible circumlocutions for a concept without a set term and thus not warranting an entry? — hippietrail (talk) 07:55, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
By the way my take on the nouns with classifiers is that if they're listed together in foreign to vi dictionaries we give it no credence but if it's listed in a monolingual vi dictionary then it warrants an entry here and if it's in vi to foreign dictionaries that it at least warrants consideration for an entry here. I'm always in favour of following the lead of traditional dictionaries for our languages modulated by a desire to keep our entry formats consistent across languages as much as possible. I also think there's no harm in having soft redirects for classifier+nouns that we find in any kind of dictionary, or we do similar to the Japanese -suru noun->verb entries. I'm always against hard redirects except for long phrases in the main namespace. Same goes for nominalizers.
It seems Vietnamese presents unique challenges even compared to our other "monosyllabic" languages simply due to opting for spaces between all syllables rather than no spaces even between words, which I wouldn't have expected. — hippietrail (talk) 07:55, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
I have learned Vietnamese grammar and orthography since third grade, and I am still not sure what truly is "standard". It appears that whatever is "standard" is merely proclaimed by Bộ Giáo dục và Đào tạo, and it is, de facto, not always followed by everyone else, even some authors who write books for them and other governmental organizations (I'm living in such a funny country). The term "lượng từ" is usually accompanied with "số từ", both of which are used to express the idea of the plural. Examples of "lượng từ" include các, những, muôn, mấy, vài etc. (similar to the French les, des), and examples of "số từ" include một, hai, etc. For all I know, a "lượng từ" is definitely not a counter word, which covers con, cái, chiếc, etc., nor is it a measure word, which covers lít (liter), mét (meter), cân (kilogram), etc. If it were, such expression as "những con chó" would make no sense. A counter following another counter would just be ungrammatical, wouldn't it?
I can tell you that you don't need to study linguistics to know what "lượng từ" is. Terms like that are considered part of basic grammar. All students must study them.
Yeah, Vietnamese modern orthography is pretty much of a mess compared to older forms. It's sometimes difficult even for a native speaker to recognize a word in a sentence, since the orthography itself is purely "monosyllabic". In the past some scholars did use hyphens to join syllables of a single word, for example Hà-nội, cách-mạng. ばかFumikotalk 11:03, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
@Fumiko Take Thank you very much. So, "lượng từ" doesn't mean "counter", "classifier" or "measure word", what does it mean? Or should it be deleted? Also, is "danh từ chỉ đơn vị" a correct translation of any of these English terms? And should it be considered a single word (compound) or is it a pure SoP? --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 14:12, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
Like I said, "lượng từ"s are pluralizing words, in much the same way as the French les/des, the Japanese tachi are. một con gà means "a chicken", while những con gà (with "những" being a "lượng từ") means "(the) chickens". I'm not sure about the English translation for it, though. ばかFumikotalk 14:30, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
P/S: According to the English wikipedia, "lượng từ"s are called "articles", just like the English a/an/the. ばかFumikotalk 01:38, 18 April 2015 (UTC)
I've come across stuff on the net before talking about quantifiers in Vietnamese. That's a term that is sometimes used synonymously to classifier/counter/measure word, but not so by linguists since I think they have a more particular meaning of "quantifier" they use. Maybe this is such a quantifier? Otherwise "pluralizing particle" might be best as it wouldn't normally be accepted that Vietnamese has "articles" at all though people trying to relate Vietnamese to English grammar often call various things articles in my experience. — hippietrail (talk) 12:11, 18 April 2015 (UTC)
I just got some new clarification from a Quora user:
oh I made a mistake again, "những" is indeed "lượng từ" (measure word) Classifiers like con, cái, cây... are called "danh từ chỉ loại" My head spinned because you used the wrong word ("lượng từ") and because the confusing Quora revert feature :-(
"Trong tiếng Việt có một lớp danh từ khá đặc biệt so với nhiều ngôn ngữ khác, như tiếng Hàn, Nhật, Nga,... Đó là các danh từ chỉ đơn vị tự nhiên (DTĐVTN), ví dụ: con, cái, chiếc, miếng, tấm,... Nó có nhiều tên gọi như loại từ, danh từ loại thể, danh từ chỉ loại,..."
hippietrail (talk) 12:28, 18 April 2015 (UTC)


Does this, and any other related words, need updating? Donnanz (talk) 13:14, 17 April 2015 (UTC)

Why? Does it seem out of date? —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 19:40, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
I'm not sure whether it has dropped out of favour (more or less officialese anyway), and whether Burmese is officially back in fashion. Donnanz (talk) 21:02, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
I don't think Burmese has ever gone out of fashion. It's always been the more common term. Google Ngrams says it's only been since 2007 that Burmese has been less than a hundred times more common than Myanmarese. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 21:39, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
OK, the stats bear out what I thought. I have made a couple of mods to the definitions, which should be acceptable. Donnanz (talk) 08:05, 18 April 2015 (UTC)

About 加

I would like to suggest to add the nanori reading of the kanji 「加」. The wikipedia site is: https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/%E5%8A%A0#Japanese

Please check the nanori reading here: http://myoujijiten.web.fc2.com/ka1.html

The goon, kan'on, and kun readings are already in the Wikipedia page, but probably it would be a nice idea to add some of the names in the URL I gave you. Actually, it'd be enough just to say that the nanori reading is 「ka」.  —This unsigned comment was added by Ikemen maru (talkcontribs) at 09:05, 2015 April 18‎.

  • The nanori set of readings is reserved for readings that are used for names, and that are not already found in the on and kun sections. Since ka is the regular on'yomi for , there is no need for any nanori section in the readings.
Also, please remember to sign your posts by adding four tildes at the end, like this: ~~~~
‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │ Tala við mig 21:15, 22 April 2015 (UTC)
  • @Ikemen maru I just reverted your addition of nanori to the entry. The current practice is as described above -- we do not add nanori sections to the ====Readings==== headings of Japanese single-kanji entries for readings that are already listed under the on'yomi or kun'yomi sections. ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │ Tala við mig 17:31, 23 April 2015 (UTC)

  • I understand, and agree with your reverts. But perhaps it would be a good idea to keep the examples I wrote?

One of them was 加井妻 [かいづま], which is a surname. ( 加井野 [かいの], was the other?) Sorry, I forgot which the other addition was.

Since ka is also the nanori reading, perhaps it'd be okay to keep at least the examples?

Ikemen maru (talk) 15:28, 26 April 2015 (UTC) Ikemen maru

As explained above, it is just an on-reading. And proper names are not good examples. 加藤 is worth mentioning, perhaps. — TAKASUGI Shinji (talk) 23:30, 26 April 2015 (UTC)

JEsus, GOtt, HErꝛ, etc

At Jesus, an IP has twice added JEsus as an alternative form, noting that this form does in fact occur. For example:

  • 1763, Geistliche und liebliche Lieder, welche der Geist des Glaubens [], section Von der Begierde zu GOtt, page 482, song 565:
    O JEſu, JEſu! Du mein Hirr, o JEſu!
  • 1717, Johann Dietrich Herrichen, Glaubiger Kinder Gottes englische Sing-Schule, page 808:
    O JEſu, JEſu, GOttes Sohn, meine Mittler
    O König aller ehren, HErꝛ JEſu, Davids Sohn

This is possibly derived from the practice of old blackletter books having the first letter of the first word of a page, title, etc be a very large and ornate majuscule, the next letter be a proportionally-sized majuscule, and the letters after than be minuscule, but in the works above, the capitalization occurs in the middle of lines and all the letters are proportionally sized (the first is not any more ornate than the rest). Should we have entries like JEsu, GOtt, etc? (Is this comparable to CamelCase? COmparable to Usenet posts that capitalize the first couple letters of words, presumably accidentally?) - -sche (discuss) 21:24, 18 April 2015 (UTC)

I think it's more similar to the practice of many English bibles writing Lord in all caps or small caps when it translates יהוה; I wouldn't favor including LORD and/or Lᴏʀᴅ for that, though. (Upon hitting Preview, I see that the first of those is already a blue link; oh, well.) —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 21:31, 18 April 2015 (UTC)
If LORD's usage notes are to be believed, some works (some Bibles and derived works) make a distinction between LORD and Lord, which is I suppose the argument for having both of those. As far as I know, there's no distinction between Jesus and JEsus. - -sche (discuss) 21:47, 18 April 2015 (UTC)
w:Capitalization#Nouns attributes it to adding further capitaliztion to distinguish divine names from ordinary capitalized nouns. Of course, this was added by the same IP at about the time they were reverted here, so some skepticism may be in order. Chuck Entz (talk) 21:51, 18 April 2015 (UTC)
Words that do not refer to God are not spelled like "GOtt", even though there was this ornate majuscule thing (which shouldn't even be limited to substantives). So the ornate majuscules should not be the reason for the existence of forms like "GOtt".
As civilised languages capitalise all nouns (e.g. (a) god = (ein) Gott in German), one can not distingush "(a) god = (ein) Gott" and "(the) God = (der) Gott" by capitalising the first letter (god <-> God; Gott <-> Gott). So it makes sense to write "GOtt" where in English one would write "God". Though, besides the distinction of appellative and proper nouns, forms like "GOtt" might also be used because religious people thought/think that important things (like God or GOtt in German) have to be "bigger" than normal things (like table or Tisch in German). But the reasons for writing "GOtt" etc. don't matter, as forms like "GOtt" exist and can be verified anyway. Though it might be good to research the reasons and put it into the etymology. || Forms like "HERR" do or should exists in German too, e.g. in Luther's Bible from ca. 1550. Though I've seen it in a digitalised version which changed the style (e.g. from Fraktur to Roman letters), so it could also be written in another way, and it might be older. || PS: There's not only one Jesus, maybe cf. [de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jesus_(Name)]. So there's a difference between JEsus and Jesus like there's between god and God, or lord and Lord or LORD. || PPS: What's with alternative spellings like JEſus and Jeſus with long s (ſ)? Such forms did and sometimes still do occur too. On the one hand one might claim that they're just graphical variants or something (well, that's like trolling - wink @sche and/or co. here) - but on the other hand there's no bijection between "spellings with long s and round s" and "spellings just with round s", but just an surjection and no injection. For example both "Wachstube" [Wachs-tube] and "Wachſtube" [Wach-stube] are mapped to "Wachstube" [Wachs-tube, Wach-stube]. Though, of course, being descriptive and not prescriptive means that forms with long s have be mentioned as well (if attestable, 3 quotes &c.). || Also as an alternative: Instead of having entries like JEsus and Jeſus one could (in case of being prescriptive and prohibiting such alternative forms: should) at least mention those forms as alternative forms at Jesus but without a link. -14:14, 14:17, 15:17, 19 April 2015 (UTC)
  • It's simply an alternative capitalisation, and not too rare either. It's intentional and independent from formatting and ornamentation of the text, common in bibles. We have those entries for Low German, so we'd have to allow it for German too. _Korn (talk) 11:01, 20 April 2015 (UTC)
As Angr pointed out, "we" even have those entries for English: God, Lord, LORD. (Yeah, there's a difference between God and god, but so there is (at least for some or sometimes) between GOtt and Gott &c.). Also there's CamelCase - besides camelcase - and its derivates. -18:34, 23 April 2015 (UTC)
You might find it more polite to have a signature that leads to your user page. _Korn (talk) 22:21, 23 April 2015 (UTC)


How did this acquire the meaning of ‘butt’ in North America? --Romanophile (talk) 12:53, 20 April 2015 (UTC)

I have read that it comes ultimately from Fanny Hill ("Fanny Hill or Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure", John Cleland, 1748). First, the Brits started using her name to refer to the vulva, and after it crossed the Atlantic, Americans used it for the buttocks. Since the British speakers did not explain explicitly to the Americans that by Fanny they meant vulva, but merely indicated "down there" with some vague hand gestures, the Americans assumed they meant the butt, since that is the part of the anatomy "down there" that really catches the eye. —Stephen (Talk) 15:55, 26 April 2015 (UTC)


Someone added the POS "verb" along with an rfd tag. A bit dumb isn't it? Adding a POS with no defn.? Can I just delete this? -- ALGRIF talk 15:55, 20 April 2015 (UTC)

Some uses of it as a verb: [6], [7], [8]. Perhaps they meant to put an {{rfdef}} tag on it instead of {{rfd}}. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 18:16, 20 April 2015 (UTC)
I agree it was probably intended as an rfdef. I have added two clearly attestable meanings. Kiwima (talk) 01:24, 22 April 2015 (UTC)


I'm not sure that any of our three definitions are correct. According to the OED Pithecanthropus is the genus to which Java man was originally assigned. It is not a synonym for Java Man. Nor can it be the former name of Homo erectus; a genus is not equal to a species. The former name of H. erectus would have been P. erectus. Nor is it the former name of the genus Homo. The species H. neanderthalis and H. sapiens have always been members of Homo, even when Pithecanthropus was current. SpinningSpark 00:31, 21 April 2015 (UTC)

I've added a real definition as the first sense, which may need some tweaking. I agree with all your comments, though Pithecanthropus is a former name for part of Homo, which is one less likely reading of "Former name of Homo". I should also mention that Pithecanthropus isn't the first genus: the original description used "Anthropopithecus erectus", but the original describer changed it to Pithecanthropus erectus when it became obvious that it was more human than ape. That would be against the current rules for zoological nomenclature, and probably the rules in effect back then, too- but since both names are synonyms for Homo, it doesn't really matter. At any rate, the original three senses should be deleted, since no zoologist or anthropologist would use them that way, and non-scientists would most likely use a common name such as Java man. Chuck Entz (talk) 03:05, 21 April 2015 (UTC)
I've tweaked your definition and removed the incorrect ones. SpinningSpark 09:07, 21 April 2015 (UTC)


Some works discussing animal behaviour (see google books:"crows" "tools" "substrate"), e.g. crows' recognition that putting rocks into a tube of water raises the water level enough that they can retrieve food floating on the surface of the water in the deep tube, seem to use substrate to refer to the base "environmental objects" of an experiment or situation in which tool use is possible (even one not set up by humans), as distinct from the tools. In some cases, there is sand in the bottom of the crows' tubes of water, and that's substrate in sense 7. But often, the term seems to be used for the tube itself as well (regardless of whether or not there's sand in it), or the animal itself(?), which our entry doesn't quite cover.

  • 2006, Edward A. Wasserman, Thomas R. Zentall, Comparative Cognition: Experimental Explorations of Animal Intelligence ISBN 0195167651, page 520:
    Detach/subtract [tasks involve] Severing a fixed attachment between environmental objects (or the substrate) or removing object(s) from another unattached object, so the latter is a more useful tool.
  • 2000, Mike Hansell, Bird Nests and Construction Behaviour ISBN 1139429086, page 90:
    This definition [of "tool"] is not simple, but contains several elements. The tool must not be part of the animal's body (a beak is not a tool); the user must manipulate the tool in some way for it to realise its function; and, finally, a tool cannot be attached to the substrate. This is a fairly clear definition, but does seem to produce some rather arbitrary distinctions (Hansell 1987b). The spider Dinopis, for example, makes a small web which it holds in its legs, thrusting it down on passing ants. This is a tool, but all other webs, however complex, are not since they are anchored to the substrate. The woodpecker finch [...] that uses a fine stick held in the beak to extract insect prey from wood, is a tool user, but a shrike [...] that impales an insect on a thorn still attached to the bush is not.

The spider citation could be using sense 2 iff we expanded it from "...an organism..." to "...an organism or other thing...". Alternatively, one could argue that it's sense 6, but the "construction" tag seems dubious, and "adheres" would need to be improved because a thorn doesn't really "adhere" to a vine so much as it is part of it. - -sche (discuss) 16:37, 21 April 2015 (UTC)

I've made this change. - -sche (discuss) 00:56, 23 April 2015 (UTC)
  • All, or at least most, of the definitions seem like domain-specific applications of the basic metaphor. There is no end, except lack of attestation, to the specialization possible. For example: "The physical material upon which a photovoltaic cell is applied."
We should only have those subsenses that are less than fully transparent to a beginning student of the domain of application. It is certainly possible that some {sub)sense(s) not fit under a well-written sense, requiring another sense, but I rather doubt it. DCDuring TALK 01:38, 23 April 2015 (UTC)


Does the sense "mark on a horse's face" really have the same etymology as "intense fire"? SemperBlotto (talk) 20:14, 22 April 2015 (UTC)

Online Etymology Dictionary has a view. DCDuring TALK 00:28, 23 April 2015 (UTC)


This seems to be a obsolete plural form of [?], any ideas about the singular? The English seems to be singular. There is a Middle French sense which is beyond my abilities. See Citations:chiaux and Citations:Chiaux for attestations. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 23:20, 22 April 2015 (UTC)


Could someone native pay attention to the definitions of this multifaceted verb, please? Im particularly puzzled with this definition: "to give up, stop succumbing to" as "to succumb" is defined as "to give up". Another problematic one is this: "to send back; to give up; to surrender; to resign". Is this one or four definitions? If it is one, a usex or two would certainly help. These are the most obscure definitions, but also the others would benefit of thoughtful attention. --Hekaheka (talk) 03:51, 23 April 2015 (UTC)

I have clarified it some, please take a look now to see if it any clearer. Leasnam (talk) 05:53, 23 April 2015 (UTC)
Thx, Leasnam. It's a way clearer now. --Hekaheka (talk) 07:31, 23 April 2015 (UTC)

need a quote translated to Korean from English

I would like the quote " I'd die to win, cause I'm born to lose" translated to Korean—This unsigned comment was added by Paji17 (talkcontribs) at 10:21, 23 April 2015‎ (UTC).

   I began an answer on the assumption that you are fluent in Korean, but stymied by weak colloquial English; now i see that it is literally a quote from an English-language song or something. I thot you had the worthy intention of improving your own grasp of something in English that had gotten you fascinated -- which my native insight could have assisted. (But i can't imagine why you would want to evangelize with our local brand of trivia, let alone expect someone at wikt to want to help you do so.)
--Jerzyt 10:03, 25 April 2015 (UTC)
The request is most likely for a tattoo and has nothing whatsoever to do with evangelizing. Many people who want a tattoo select a favorite saying, aphorism, maxim, or adage, and they sometimes want to translate it into a language that uses an interesting script, such as Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Tibetan, or Sanskrit. People make such requests quite often at wikt, and we help them if we can. If you dislike such notions, it would be wise to simply ignore the request and not pass judgment or rake the requester over the coals with a preachy lecture. —Stephen (Talk) 10:21, 25 April 2015 (UTC)
   Interesting, and wish i could remember (from last year) either deciding not to comment further, or getting absorbed elsewhere too quickly to have seen that response. Thanks for the insight into tattoo culture (which i now notice i write off as different strokes in the case of friends, and generally as an aspect of modern death-wish culture in strangers). While i resist pressure for consistency, one ought to be more conscious of their contradictions than i was.
--Jerzyt 02:40, 21 July 2016 (UTC)


"Go Wiktionary!"

What part of speech is go here? Imperative verb, or interjection? Is this covered by any of the senses we have at the moment (and we do have a lot!) Smurrayinchester (talk) 12:56, 23 April 2015 (UTC)

Imperative verb, similar to the usage in "you go, girl!". Can't really tell from our coverage. Equinox 12:59, 23 April 2015 (UTC)
  • It's the plain imperative for go (proceed, function). _Korn (talk) 15:16, 23 April 2015 (UTC)

German nouns

See e.g. Sänger and Polizist, and User talk:Angr#Sänger and User_talk:
German nouns like "Sänger" (masculine gender; singer), "Polizist" (masculine gender; police officer), "Katze" (feminine gender; cat), "Rabe" (masculine gender; raven), "Person" (feminine gender; person) are of one grammatical gender, but can refer to both biological genders or sexes. [In traditional grammar the gender of such words is known as "genus epicoenum" (Latin), "[genus] promiscuum" (Latin), "Genus epicoenum" (Latin; Latin-German) and "vermischtes Geschlecht" (German).]
Masculine personal nouns like "Sänger" and "Polizist" can refer to both males and females. The reference to females is especially common when the word is used in plural or indefinite/unspecific (e.g. with the indefinite article "ein" (a/an)), and less common when refering to a specific individual female as there are words with -in/[-inn]], like "Sängerin" (female singer). For example: Senteces like "Soldaten sind Mörder." (soldiers are killers/murderers) and "Jeder Dieb ist ein Verbrecher." (every theft→thief is a criminal) usually (though sometimes depending on the context) refer to soldiers/thefts of both genders and not just to male soldiers/thefts. While it is more common to say something like "Die Diebin Hillary beginn ein Verbechen." (the female theft Hillary committed crime) than to use something like *"Der [weibliche] Dieb Hillary beginn ein Verbrechen".
Anyway, words such as "Sänger" can refer to persons of both genders and so information like "male singer" are wrong. Simply "singer" isn't wrong, though one might also phrase it as "singer, especially a male one".
Someone's argument (Angr, cf. the linked talk page) for only using something like "male singer" was: "That's true of any masculine personal noun, though, not just Sänger. Knowing that is part of knowing German, it's not lexical information about this word, so it doesn't belong in the entry."
I disagree with that and thus I'm using the tea room - though I don't like tea -:
Counter-argument: "Entries are also read by persons who don't speak said language or don't speak it very well. Thus the limited information 'male person' is misleading. And as there's no note on German grammar here -- or is there something like Help:German grammar with a note like 'masculine personal nouns can also refer to females, though this is omitted in the entries'? --, it's also wrong."
Other opinions, please. -17:00, 24 April 2015 (UTC)

  • Let me give you a summary of the argument again: Some German nouns can refer to both a being with a specific sex and one with an undefined sex. The argument to be solved is whether both definitions should be present in the entries or whether the gender-specific one should be omitted. E.g.: Sänger either has the definitions "singer, male singer" or only "singer"; Katze either has the definitions "cat, female cat" or only "cat". There are words which refer to a female singer and a male cat, but cannot be used for a sexually unspecified singer or cat respectively. _Korn (talk) 17:35, 24 April 2015 (UTC)
ps.: I'm not sure whether as a random user I'm allowed to move this to the beer parlour, but I'm pretty sure that's where it belongs. _Korn (talk) 17:37, 24 April 2015 (UTC)
There are 3 possibilities: e.g. "Sänger" as simply "singer" (i.e. male or female singer), "male singer" (i.e. male singer, so excluding female singers) or "singer, especially male singer" (i.e. a female or male singer, though it is especially a male one). One could also differ between "# singer, especially a male one" (one meaning) and "# singer [line break] # male singer" (two meanings). Same for "Katze": "cat", "female cat", "cat, especially a female cat".
Also regarding an argument of Chuck Entz (in an older discussion linked above): The different meanings were not created recently through feminism and political correctness (which should have been noted somehow). Instead, German nouns already had the gender-neutral meaning in "older times" (still talking about Modern High German, not about Germanic, Old High German, Gothic etc.). -17:55, 24 April 2015 (UTC)
I can propose a solution to this issue, actually. Compare Frisian. The respective sexual form can be subsumed under the generic one. _Korn (talk) 18:06, 24 April 2015 (UTC)

/* regards */


   Over on WP, i found "the high regards given to Angleton by his colleagues in the intelligence business" and pontificated "highly idiomatic", on the WP article's talk page, re the lexicographic problem.
   I see regards#Noun as exemplary, but doubt that regard#Noun suffices to overcome the effect of the PEBCAK, namely the expectation that if it walks like the plural of a real singular noun, it must quack like one (so that looking for an entry for the plural feels foolish). Is there something more constructive than asking this question, here, that i should have considered doing?
--Jerzyt 00:03, 25 April 2015 (UTC)

I am not sure I understand your problem here. Under regard, Etymology 1, meaning 2, I see One's concern for another; esteem. [from 16th c.], which seems to cover your case - making your usage, indeed, one that contains a plural. Kiwima (talk) 00:34, 25 April 2015 (UTC)
   To be candid, in light of the idiom, it didn't occur to me to construe it as a countable plural, referring to the respective regards in which each of his individual colleagues respectively held him (rather than their collective and mutually reinforcing consensus of regard for him). In fact, i'd not have credited the notion of a native speaker construing the specimen text that way, since i suppose that few who are unaware of the idiom would be likely to treat "regard" as anything but a verb whose existence might be hypothesized from the appearance of "-ing" in the quasi-prepositional usage of "regarding".
--Jerzyt 08:20, 25 April 2015 (UTC)
The WP example strikes me as written by someone for whom English is not the first language. Determiners and uncountable nouns, of which regard is one in some of its senses, often give trouble. I would certainly say "the high regard in which Angleton was held [] ". Someone seems to have confused "high regard" with "give him my regards", which are different senses of regard. DCDuring TALK 03:58, 25 April 2015 (UTC)
   Exactly my diagnosis. And the core of my concern is that even for this native speaker, it was only after observing that my dicts fail to treat the uncountable sense of "regards" that i even thot of checking whether there is a wikt "regards" entry. IMO, a ESL user would be at least as likely as i to give up after trying "regard" (and i'm doubtful that many non-en wikts will provide "give my regards" adequate coverage)... whence i wonder if singular nouns with plural forms whose meanings (as in this case) can't be inferred from their singular definitions may deserve see-also links to the plural definitions.
--Jerzyt 08:20, 25 April 2015 (UTC)


I'd looked for a sense "cautious" or "restrained", which I think exists, and I asked for this sense to be added to the lemma (on the discussion page). The lemma already has the sense "based on pessimistic assumptions" in the context of statistics. But now I'm wondering: isn't this really the sense I mean? And hence, is it even correct to define it as "pessimistic"? Because say a biologist has found a mutated virus in a poor country, and now estimates the impact based on three different models, which lead to estimates that (a) 0.1 % of the population will die, (b) 1.0 %, and (c) up to 5.0 %. In such a case, what would be the conservative estimate? I might be wrong, but wouldn't 0.1 % be the conservative estimate? That is the one that is restrained, low-key, trying to avoid overstatement? Please clarify :)—This unsigned comment was added by ‎ (talkcontribs) at 09:58, 25 April 2015.

   Sounds like "pessimistic" is used in a more technical sense than you are recognizing: the conservative estimate reflects pessimism, not about the outcomes that humans intrinsically value, but about the quality, i.e. statistical significance, of the measured numbers you have going in. And it is generally not the models that would be considered conservative, but within each given model, whether the statistical data that the model is applied to had sampled a large enough fraction of the population and/or of the disease agent that the probability of the death rate (or for that matter, the survival rate) exceeding the model's estimate was 75%, 90%, or 99%: small samples make it likely that by chance you evaluated the susceptibility of a non-representative collection of people, while large samples increase the likelihood that your population as a whole is very similar to your sample, corresponding to a conservative estimate of death or survival rate.
   (I would describe a model as conservative in this sense only if it had parameters built in that were based on extensive collection of data rather smaller samples; it's likely IMO that the .1, 1, and 5 %-mortality models you pictured would, on the contrary, result from different hypotheses about what the mechanism of exposure was, or what the efficacy of newly instituted supportive therapies would turn out to be.)
--Jerzyt 11:09, 25 April 2015 (UTC)
Yes, it's a very common sense and we don't have it! Also the 'Relating to the Conservative Party' is usually Conservative and even in spoken English they are referred to as 'small C conservative' and 'big C conservative' because of course, capital letters aren't pronounced differently! Renard Migrant (talk) 13:57, 25 April 2015 (UTC)
If anyone fancies having a go at Conservative, tory and Tory, they're pretty much a mess. As far as I know Conservative doesn't mean Conservative Party even, though Conservatives does. Renard Migrant (talk) 14:03, 25 April 2015 (UTC)
Done and done. Renard Migrant (talk) 17:25, 25 April 2015 (UTC)
Okay. Well, I'm not an expert on statistics at all. If one defines "pessimistic" the way Jerzy does above, it all makes a lot of sense. But obviously people (and wiktionary is made for just "people", I hope) are likely to understand the word "pessimistic" the way I did. So maybe some change on this part on this particular definition could still be done. But anyway.. thanks a lot!


I'm having an edit war with an IP over the usage note. Specifically about the part that 'Kätzin' is not considered a normal form. I'd appreciate if someone could propose a solution. It's not really a case for RFV because even if a word is either formally alright or only used jokingly, you probably won't find three people deeming it necessary to point that out. Korn (talk) 17:19, 25 April 2015 (UTC)

How can the feminine be Kätzin? It's a feminine noun. Renard Migrant (talk) 17:24, 25 April 2015 (UTC)
It's the female noun with an additional female suffix that is normally reserved for nouns ending in -er. The term is in the Duden (official dictionary of Germany). As a further hint: Google Books gives 3292 results for "Kater und Katze" and its inversion and 111 results for "Kater und Kätzin" and its inversion, if you remove all editions of Faust, Germany's most famous theatre play, which uses the latter phrase once. Korn (talk) 17:26, 25 April 2015 (UTC)
As I understand it, Kätzin is something of a technical term, used by breeders to refer unambiguously to a female cat, sort of like queen in English. The usage note, however, belongs at Kätzin once it's created, not at Katze. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 18:40, 25 April 2015 (UTC)
But when Kätzin is part of the declension template of the entry Katze, it's considered a part of the lemma, isn't it? The usage note also points out that the lemma Katze does not only refer to the species but also a female member of it. I'm not sure if that information belongs into a usage note or an extra definition. If it is a technical term, the note is inappropriate, of course. (By which I don't mean to imply that it isn't true.) Korn (talk) 19:25, 25 April 2015 (UTC)
It's not in the declension template, it's in the headword template. Being there doesn't preclude its being a lemma of its own, which it certainly is. I'd say Katze should have two senses: "1. cat" and "2. female cat". —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 19:35, 25 April 2015 (UTC)
What I mean is, it's not an inflected form so much as a derived term, in the same way tailoress is derived from tailor rather than being an inflected form of it. Renard Migrant (talk) 12:39, 26 April 2015 (UTC)
I am entirely unfamiliar with the details of Wiktionary templates. It is a female noun with a productive suffix used to derive female forms from male nouns. If you think it doesn't belong into that header but into the L4, you know how to edit. Korn (talk) 12:46, 26 April 2015 (UTC)
Obviously the weird thing about this word is adding the feminine suffix (yes, derivational not inflectional) to a feminine noun. I don't know of any other word where this is done: I've never heard *Entin for a specifically female duck or *Gänsin for a specifically female goose or *Schlängin for a specifically female snake or *Bienin for a specifically female bee or anything like that. That may be why people feel the need to point out the oddity of Kätzin. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 13:41, 26 April 2015 (UTC)
Late reply: I've never heard Kätzin either. It doesn't sound impossible to me, but neither does Gänsin or maybe Entin. -- The suffix -in marks beings who are sexually feminine. If the root word is grammatically feminine or neuter, instead of the normal masculine, that makes its use a bit special, but not so special actually. It's a layout question; grammatically there's no problem. Kolmiel (talk) 23:55, 7 May 2015 (UTC)
By the way: I think feminine forms are somewhere in the twilight zone between inflection and derivation. The same goes for diminutives. We have those in the headword templates as well. But all right, they're not inflection templates, so that seems all right. Kolmiel (talk) 00:00, 8 May 2015 (UTC)

Found a copyvio

Hi there,

FYI i found a copyvio here, which i undid here. Not sure if additional steps are needed. Hopefully i'm at the right forum for this. --Jerome Potts (talk) 22:06, 25 April 2015 (UTC)


I'm trying to create the pronunciation for Pohnpeian words based on the Ponapean Reference Grammar, but I'm unable to find anything about stress in Pohnpeian. Does anyone know how stress works? DerekWinters (talk) 23:55, 25 April 2015 (UTC)

smallest room

We have two senses: (i) "the toilet, lavatory or loo"; (ii) "the bathroom (US)". I think these refer to the same thing, and someone has erroneously included two definitions in order to cover the two (UK and US) words that usually refer to the room with the toilet in it. I don't think the "smallest room" can actually be the toilet (thing you sit on), can it? Equinox 00:09, 26 April 2015 (UTC)

  • I gather that in the UK, "toilet" is sometimes used to refer to the room, rather than the device. On a completely unrelated note, when I visited the UK, I saw a lot of signs that said "to let", and couldn't help thinking how easy it would be to paint an "i" in the gap. bd2412 T 01:58, 26 April 2015 (UTC)
    • Yes, the senses should be merged as they refer to the same thing. Yes, in the UK "toilet" is sometimes used to refer to the room. There are numerous stories of Brits visiting America who go to a restaurant and at some point ask the waiter where the toilet is, only to be told, "In the bathroom, of course, where else would it be?". —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 11:52, 26 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Let's merge it as proposed. In case of doubt, send a putative sense "device for depositing human waste and then flushing it away with water" to RFV, but it seems an overkill. Other dicts include Collins[9]. --Dan Polansky (talk) 12:12, 26 April 2015 (UTC)

fall in love

The 1st and 3rd need to be merged, don't they? or all three altogether. Also, is the redirect from fall in love with acceptable?--Dixtosa (talk) 12:15, 26 April 2015 (UTC)

I don't think so. To fall in love with your wife doesnt mean the same as fall in love with skiing. Sense 1 is romantic love. Sense 3 is intense liking. Leasnam (talk) 17:35, 26 April 2015 (UTC)


Someone reverted my removal of obscure tech info from =: [10] on the grounds that it might benefit editors writing wiki markup. I don't think that's a reason for us to include such things within entries; they should be on a FAQ or editors' help page, not in an entry. It's certainly not a "usage note". Others' opinions? Equinox 12:28, 26 April 2015 (UTC)

I would remove it as not usage notes. Also, I don't see how it's useful to us. Furthermore even if it were, surely that's not the right place for it. Renard Migrant (talk) 12:40, 26 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Let's remove the putative usage note. It is based only on 61 being the dec of U+003D code point, which we show in the box to the right. If we want to provide HTML entities, these should be in the box at the right, but I don't think we want to do that. --Dan Polansky (talk) 13:47, 26 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Re-rv'd per this consensus. Hillcrest98 (talk) 14:10, 26 April 2015 (UTC)
@Dan Polansky: it is not a putative usage note. If these should be in the box at the right, then you write but I don't think we want to do that. Why not provide mapping? That usage note:
The HTML entity for = is &#61;.
provides the reader with something that {{character info/new}} fails to provide. Writing that 61 being the dec of U+003D code point is just dropping the ball. The internet uses HTML. There is a relationship between the "document character set" in a HTML document and the "external character encoding" representation.
@Equinox, Renard Migrant, Dan Polansky, Hillcrest98: This is a mapping from one standard to another, and not just an aid for an editor (see W3 recomendation), the template should include, for example,
Name or ENTITY
i.e. alphanumeric reference
i.e. Unicode value
i.e. decimal conversion
i.e. literal
Equal; U+02A75
equals; U+0003D &#61; =
EqualTilde; U+02242
equest; U+0225F
that way mapping is not confused with usage. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 15:31, 26 April 2015 (UTC)
I'm happy with Dan Polansky's idea of consigning this sort of information to the character-info box. Is that doable? — I.S.M.E.T.A. 16:00, 26 April 2015 (UTC)
IMO, Module:character info should autogenerate the decimal equivalent of whatever hexadecimal codepoint it displays. — I.S.M.E.T.A. 16:04, 26 April 2015 (UTC)
I agree that it's acceptable in the character-info box. I hope nobody is going to demand any further easy translations (octal?): hex and dec really are the main two, though. Equinox 23:40, 26 April 2015 (UTC)
Is this where that character template should be edited? Template:character info Hillcrest98 (talk) 01:45, 27 April 2015 (UTC)
No, it calls a module, which uses other modules. Please don't edit anything there without asking here first. Chuck Entz (talk) 03:12, 27 April 2015 (UTC)
I've asked at Module talk:character info#Autogeneratation of hexadecimal codepoints’ decimal equivalents for this feature to be added. — I.S.M.E.T.A. 18:03, 27 April 2015 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── All thanks be to Dixtosa for making the addition. — I.S.M.E.T.A. 07:11, 28 April 2015 (UTC)

as per

As far as I know, "as per" is redundancy. The correct usage is just "per". One should say "Per your note ...", not "As per your note ..."

How are you defining correct? Just because something's redundant doesn't make it incorrect. For example, 'of mine' as in 'a friend of mine', the 'of' and 'mine' are mutually redundant, but it's correct English, while 'a friend mine' and 'a friend of me' aren't. Renard Migrant (talk) 17:30, 27 April 2015 (UTC)


Discussion moved from Wiktionary:Requests for verification.

Could I get someone more experienced with Welsh to tell me if the gender of this word being masculine checks out? I have three dictionaries that say its feminine... I want to be sure before I edit it. Anglom (talk) 03:41, 27 April 2015 (UTC)

Just to check, you're not challenging the validity of this word? Renard Migrant (talk) 17:31, 27 April 2015 (UTC)
Not at all. I wasn't really sure whether to ask in the discussion page or here, so I thought I'd try here. I just didn't want to change the gender if it actually is a masculine word in spoken Welsh. Anglom (talk) 18:17, 27 April 2015 (UTC)
The Tea Room actually might have been the place to ask, now that I think about it. Anglom (talk) 18:22, 27 April 2015 (UTC)
I've moved the discussion to the Tea Room. —Mr. Granger (talkcontribs) 19:15, 27 April 2015 (UTC)
The Geiriadur Prifysgol Cymru says it's feminine, and it gives several examples of adjectives undergoing soft mutation after it, which pretty much proves it. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 19:40, 27 April 2015 (UTC)
Thank you kindly. Anglom (talk) 20:57, 27 April 2015 (UTC)


[11] So are we defining things in terms of what they mean in practice, or in terms of what PaulBustion88 says they mean according to the medical establishment? jus checkin. Equinox 23:59, 27 April 2015 (UTC)

  • We should be defining terms with the meaning that they have in the real world. If a term has a more strict meaning in a the legal system of a particular country then we might tell people in the talk page but not make it part of a definition. SemperBlotto (talk) 08:00, 28 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Equinox, if you had bothered reading the entry, you would have seen that the broader definition, of any adult sexual attraction towards/interaction with any minor, is also included. I'm only limiting the MEDICAL definition to a primary or exclusive attraction to children. That's what Renard Migrant and I agreed on as a compromise. The broader, "real word" usage is already included, and its the first definition, so what is the problem?--PaulBustion88 (talk) 08:04, 28 April 2015 (UTC)

If you look at the link you yourself provided Equinox, the first definition is the one you seem to be arguing in favor of,"Sexual feelings or desires by adults towards minors."We have that first, then the more specific, medical definition. So its not only being defined according to what the medical establishment says or what I say. --PaulBustion88 (talk) 08:16, 28 April 2015 (UTC) Also, the second definition, the one Equinox is criticizing, specifies that it refers to "in medicine, more strictly". So its not claiming that this is the only definition.--PaulBustion88 (talk) 08:56, 28 April 2015 (UTC) Also, Renard Migrant agreed with allowing the narrower medical definition as well as long as the popular definition of any sexual attraction to/interaction with a minor under 18 by an adult 18 or older was also included. "PaulBustion88 has raised on my talk page (and not here, much to my chagrin) the possibility of having two definitions. A general-use definition, an instance of an adult engaging in sexual activity with a minor, no matter what the ages are apart from those two restrictions, and a medical definition where we specify pre-pubescent. I would be in favor of it; I think these definitions are distinct in terms of usage and meaning. Renard Migrant (talk) 22:51, 24 April 2015 (UTC)" Since we still have the general use definition, what's wrong with also including the medical definition?--PaulBustion88 (talk) 10:19, 28 April 2015 (UTC) Wikipedia states, here, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pedophilia, "Pedophilia is used for individuals with a primary or exclusive sexual interest in prepubescent children aged 13 or younger." The source is the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders 5th Edition. It states that pedophilia means a "primary or exclusive attraction." So this is what it means according to the medical establishment, I'm not just saying it.--PaulBustion88 (talk) 10:24, 28 April 2015 (UTC) Anyway, Equinox, if you want to take out the medical definition and only use the popular definition, I would not edit war over it. So if you do it I'm not going to fight you, I'm only giving my arguments for why it should remain the way it is. But its not important enough to war over, I'll defer to consensus. Now I've said all I have to on the matter.--PaulBustion88 (talk) 10:33, 28 April 2015 (UTC)

Part of the reason the medical community considers "primary or exclusive" to be important to the definition of pedophilia, is that not all people who have sex with prepubescent children are pedophiles. Some of them have only a small amount of attraction to prepubescent children, and actually prefer adults,adolescents, pubescents, or something else other than prepubescent children, but choose them as an object when they lack a more appropriate object, for example an adult who cannot form a sexual relationship with an adult partner. Pedophilia is about what happens in the mind, in the medical definition, not about behavior. Its sort of like the fact that a person reads a book does not mean that is what he prefers to do, their might just have been nothing good on television.--PaulBustion88 (talk) 19:02, 28 April 2015 (UTC)
Attested senses belong on a sense line not buried on a talk page. I think, if there are different senses being warred over, then start adding more attested usage to demonstrate each of those senses. Let the usage explain the sense itself. Describe through attested usage what each of those authorities prescribe and also fully reference it. If there is a legal definition, then that should be attested to. If there is a medical definition, then that should be attested to. If there is a journalist definition, then that should be attested to. If it varies by jurisdiction or culture, then that should be attested to also. If some groups have perverted usages, then those should be attested to also. Three attestations of usage of each sense is just a minimum. If there are a dozen senses, then those should be attested to also.
The usage notes should come after those senses are well attested.
The first sense has no attestation – that is a problem. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 19:44, 28 April 2015 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── BoBoMisiu is obviously right here. — I.S.M.E.T.A. 20:56, 28 April 2015 (UTC)

    • 2004, Ronald J. Comer, Fundamentals of abnormal psychology, page 341:
    • Some people with pedophilia are attracted only to children; others are attracted to adults as well (APA, 2000, 1994).
    • 2007, Margaret Mary Wright, Judicial decision making in child sexual abuse cases, page 122:
      As noted earlier, pedophilia was cited as both an aggravating and a mitigating circumstance by trial judges, as was the absence of pedophilia.
    • 2009, Ann Kring, Sheri Johnson, Gerald C. Davison, Abnormal Psychology:
      Sometimes a man with pedophilia is content to stroke the child's hair, but he may also manipulate the child's genitalia, [...]

There are three attested uses right there already in the entry for the medical use of the term, the use I favor. There are no attested uses, as you yourself pointed out, for the use of the term Equinox favors, the popular definition of sexual attraction to/sexual interaction with anyone under 18 by anyone over. So if the standard of proof is how much attestation each use has, the use I favor I already has more attestation for it than the use Equinox favors. --PaulBustion88 (talk) 21:46, 28 April 2015 (UTC)

I added many attestations, especially 21st c., to Citations:pedophilia. Someone else could sort them into senses. I think there is enough there to show a criminal sense and a child molester sense. @PaulBustion88 I tagged two passages in pedophilia with {{rfv-quote}}s. I could not verify those two quotes using Google Book search. –BoBoMisiu (talk) 15:27, 29 April 2015 (UTC)
I just want to add that its kind of sloppy thinking that a child molestor must be a pedophile. That would be like assuming a person who reads books must be a bibliophile, maybe there just was not anything else to do. Some people are voracious readers in jail/prison who never pick up a book after that. A lot of child sexual molestors are more sexually attracted to adults and/or adolescents than to children, but choose to have sex with children because they lack the social skills to make sexual advances successfully on a mature person, for example. Neither the criminal sense nor the child sexual molestor sense are accurate. --PaulBustion88 (talk) 07:36, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
No, a book is never the victim of a bibliophile. That Neither the criminal sense nor the child sexual molestor sense are accurate. is contrary to the attested usage for over century. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 13:34, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
{edit conflict) We're not here to "correct sloppy thinking", we're here to document actual usage. The fact that you're going to such lengths to explain the distinction tells me that it's not one that anyone makes in real life, except for a few experts trained in technicalities. As far as most people are concerned, all people who have sex with children are pedophiles. Period. Full stop. Also remember that etymology doesn't determine meaning: the fact that a word contains -phile doesn't guarantee that it's about attraction rather than behavior. Chuck Entz (talk) 13:44, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
"No, a book is never the victim of a bibliophile." You're deliberately trying to make what I said sound more absurd than it is. I'm not saying books are people and I'm not talking about people having sex with books, I'm saying people who read books would not always necessarily do that as their first choice of activity, so people who have sex with children are not necessarily greatly attracted to children, they might be more attracted to adults and/or adolescents, but lack the social skills to make sexual advances successfully on more mature people, or for whatever other reason lack access to more appropriate objects. Also, what I said is not a point original to me, someone else observed it on the pedophilia entry's talk page. It was Leucosite. --PaulBustion88 (talk) 15:34, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
@PaulBustion88 it is a crime in many (i think most) places because there is a victim – a child. Perpetrators of other crimes who lack of social skill are still committing those crimes. They are doing something. There is an act and a victim. You do compare an inanimate object, a book, to a person, a child: [] people who have sex with children are not necessarily greatly attracted to children, they might be more attracted to adults and/or adolescents, but lack the social skills to make sexual advances successfully on more mature people, or for whatever other reason lack access to more appropriate objects. Your comparison is too far away from what I think ― to paraphrase the great sage Kyle of Southpark: Dude. They have sex with children!
Please add some attributed usages of positive associations with the term pedophilia. I think it is a category of actions – like rape. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 16:11, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
I'm not saying sexually molesting children is justified, you're trying to put words in my mouth that I never said, and I'm not saying pedophilia is a healthy attraction to have. What I'm saying is that there's a difference between having a sexual attraction to someone and acting on it. Not all pedophiles sexually molest children. That was my point. An analogy is that some heterosexual and homosexual men, for example Roman Catholic priests, are celibate and do not act on their attractions, that does not make them asexual. I'm not saying books are alive, or that children are no more valuable than books, you are deliberately putting words in my mouth I never said. Having said that. I realize nobody else here agrees with making the definition focus on the medical definition so I've given up. But I resent you implying that I approve of sex with children, I never said that. Another point I was making was not all people who have sex with children are attracted to them as much as they are to adults. Some are actually more attracted to adults than children but lack adult partners. This obviously does NOT in any way excuse what they did, but its a different motivation from that of a person fixated on children. Another example to correlate to that is some heterosexuals have sex with other men in prison because no women are there, that does not make them homosexual. And as to the crime aspect, that would be violating age of consent for sex laws, also known as the crime of statutory rape, although those terms are never used by governments or states, that's how the government's laws against sex with children are informally described, and that has nothing to do with pedophilia. --PaulBustion88 (talk) 16:16, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
Wikipedia's article about pedophilia, which is sourced, gives the definition I gave and says the sexual attraction and the sexual crime are two different things, "Pedophilia or paedophilia is a mental disorder|psychiatric disorder in which an adult or older adolescent experiences a primary or exclusive sexual attraction to prepubescent children, generally age 11 years or younger.As a medical diagnosis, specific criteria for the disorder extend the cut-off point for prepubescence to age 13. A person who is diagnosed with pedophilia must be at least 16 years of age, but adolescents must be at least five years older than the prepubescent child for the attraction to be diagnosed as pedophilia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pedophilia It also states, "In popular usage, the word pedophilia is often applied to any sexual interest in children or the act of child sexual abuse.[4This use conflates the sexual attraction (pedophilia) with the act of abuse (child molestation)" and it says "Researchers recommend that these imprecise uses be avoided because although people who commit child sexual abuse sometimes exhibit the disorder, child sexual abuse offenders are not pedophiles unless they have a primary or exclusive sexual interest in prepubescent children, and not all pedophiles molest children." Maybe the book analogy wasn't a good one. A better one would be rape, that often is not about sex but about power, in child sexual molesting, it sometimes isn't really about primary or exclusive sexual attraction but other things. --PaulBustion88 (talk) 17:11, 30 April 2015 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────@PaulBustion88 What I write is not about you but about the obviously differing senses and definitions. I know I write abrasively, nevertheless, I do not write about you.

I'm saying is that there's a difference between having a sexual attraction to someone and acting on it.

I agree.

Not all pedophiles sexually molest children.

That is just the no true Scotsman fallacy, it does not affect what pedophilia is.

An analogy is that some heterosexual and homosexual men, for example Roman Catholic priests, are celibate and do not act on their attractions, that does not make them asexual.

That is a red herring fallacy, pedophilia is not defined by unknowable characteristics (what it is not) but by knowable characteristics (what it is).

focus on the medical definition

I agree with you, there should be a sense line about the psychiatric definition. I think there should be two as there seems to be a shift in what is used to diagnose those pedophiles.

not all people who have sex with children are attracted to them as much as they are to adults. Some are actually more attracted to adults than children but lack adult partners.

That is a false dilemma, pedophilia is not about a spectrum of possibilities or a correlative but what pedophiles do to children.

but its a different motivation from that of a person fixated on children.

The action is not the same thing as the motivation.

some heterosexuals have sex with other men in prison because no women are there, that does not make them homosexual.

You don't mention if those men are the victims of rape.

that would be violating age of consent for sex laws, also known as the crime of statutory rape,

No, the definition of pedophilia does not parse who is a child. It defines the various senses of what is pedophilia.

Wiktionary is about usage. I have added attestations that show that for a century it is a crime with a child victim. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 17:44, 30 April 2015 (UTC)

But another problem with that is the definition of a child. Different countries have different legal definitions of what age is old enough for a young person to consent to sex with an older person. For example, in France the age of consent for sex is 15, but in Indiana its 16, and in Wisconsin its 18. In Germany and Austria its 14, in Russia its nominally 16 but the law is not enforced if the victim is past puberty(or at least so I've heard), its also puberty in the Mexican of Nayarit. If we define it as a sex crime against a child, what do we mean by child, someone younger than 15, 16, or 18 or what age? --PaulBustion88 (talk) 17:48, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
Also, people have hair split with me in other discussions when I used the words adult and child in relation to sex crimes laws, I know that legally the definition of adulthood is age of majority, not age of consent for sex, but age of consent for sex presumably is more relevant to the discussion here than age of majority, since age of majority does not directly relate to these crimes against children, that's why I used the age of consent examples, even though that is not what defines legal adulthood. --PaulBustion88 (talk) 18:03, 30 April 2015 (UTC)

@BoBoMisiu, PaulBustion88 Why are you guys arguing as if pedophilia were monosemous? — I.S.M.E.T.A. 18:19, 30 April 2015 (UTC)

I supppose it does not have to be monosemous, and I have already stated that I accept the popular definition being included first, even though I disagree with it. The only thing about defining it as an adult sexual attraction to a minor is that it seems like it could be potentially pov pushing, because like I stated above, different states both in the United States of America and elsewhere have different laws about who is an adult in this respect (i.e. old enough to consent to sex) and who is not. --PaulBustion88 (talk) 18:25, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
Just out of curiosity how is this the "no true Scotsman" fallacy, ""Not all pedophiles sexually molest children."

That is just the no true Scotsman fallacy, it does not affect what pedophilia is. " I'm not saying that no true pedophile would sexually molest a child, that would be a ridiculous statement, I never even said that most child sexual molestors were not pedophiles, obviously in all probability most of them are, I said that they were not the exact same thing, the attraction and the act, obviously having the attraction makes the act more likely to happen. --PaulBustion88 (talk) 18:45, 30 April 2015 (UTC)

"not all people who have sex with children are attracted to them as much as they are to adults. Some are actually more attracted to adults than children but lack adult partners.

That is a false dilemma, pedophilia is not about a spectrum of possibilities or a correlative but what pedophiles do to children." It depends on which sense of the term we are using. If we are using the popular definition it is a false dilemma. If we are using the medical definition it is not. Pedophilia in the medical sense is about a primary or exclusive attraction, so if a person is 50% attracted to adults, 50% to children , then he is not a pedophile in the medical sense of the term, so actually in the medical it does have to be within a certain spectrum for it to qualify as pedophilia. --PaulBustion88 (talk) 18:49, 30 April 2015 (UTC)

@I'm so meta even this acronym I don't think it is monosemous. I think there are about four, or maybe five, senses, including historical ones.
@PaulBustion88 I disagree, that another problem with that is the definition of a child. Age is an attribute of a child. Age is not an attribute of pedophilia. These various senses and definitions are not about particular law. You are shifting away from what pedophilia is; you are shifting to who a child is. Are you challenging some of the attested usages that I added? —BoBoMisiu (talk) 19:01, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
No, I'm not. I see what you are saying now. --PaulBustion88 (talk) 19:10, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
I'm not contesting the way the article is in this respect now. I don't want to change this aspect of it anymore. --PaulBustion88 (talk) 19:15, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
I know its not monosemous, I just wanted to focus more on the medical definition. But I defer to the consensus that we focus on actual usage in a dictionary, not necessarily correct or literal use. --PaulBustion88 (talk) 19:25, 30 April 2015 (UTC)

Searching google books:"paedophilias" and google books:"pedophilias" brings up usages that may help to distinguish this word's senses. — I.S.M.E.T.A. 21:30, 30 April 2015 (UTC)

knock oneself out two senses different from each other?

Are the current two senses ("To go ahead; to do as one pleases", and granting permission) different from each other? Is it ever used in the first or third person? ("I'll knock myself out then" sounds weird to me) Also, is there another sense meaning "exhaust oneself"? Siuenti (talk) 11:21, 28 April 2015 (UTC)

In reverse order:
The "exhaust" sense is at knock out, as it can be transitive without being reflexive.
In reported speech, for example, all persons and numbers are possible, if not elegant: "I told him to knock himself out if that's what he wanted."
I don't know whether I was right in splitting the senses. I think I was just trying to clean up the entry rather than perfect it. It is the kind of expression that seems to 'feel' different to speakers, probably just because of the discourse function, when used in the imperative, even though the semantics are arguably the same. DCDuring TALK 11:56, 28 April 2015 (UTC)
They do seem different. Sadly I have nothing better to offer than what it says now. Renard Migrant (talk) 15:24, 29 April 2015 (UTC)


This entry has reached a number of definitions that is problematic, as it seriously hampers overview/navigation. I don't dare to play topiary gardener myself, but I think it would be helpful if all the copular senses and all the auxiliary definitions would somehow be summarised with a dropdown or at least be put under a common ## or something. _Korn (talk) 10:54, 29 April 2015 (UTC)

This is even harder to clean up than the entries for prepositions and other grammaticized words. Probably, treating some definitions as subsenses of others would be useful. Perhaps deployment of {{defdate}} among the senses would be a good preliminary. DCDuring TALK 13:33, 30 April 2015 (UTC)


Etyms 1 & 2 need be merged, as they are the same. Anyone good at that? Etyms are not my strong point. --Jerome Potts (talk) 18:04, 29 April 2015 (UTC)

But they aren't, exactly. The verb is from an OE verb and the noun from an OE noun. DCDuring TALK 20:18, 29 April 2015 (UTC)
Done. Just like other dictionaries, we should reserve separate etymologies for things that are really unrelated, not for things like denominal verbs. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 20:55, 29 April 2015 (UTC)
Really? I spend a lot of time separating etymologies which lead back to different PGmc forms which happened to have coalesced in Modern English as a noun form and a verb form...in the case of prick, the PGmc forms are not positively reconstructed (i.e. *prik-), and so appear identical. But they should probably be made out to be *prikô (noun) and *prikjaną/*prikōną (verb) Leasnam (talk) 04:48, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
I also disagree with Jerome Potts and Aɴɢʀ on this one. As DCDuring wrote, prick (noun) derives from the Old English noun prica, whereas prick (verb) derives from the Old English verb prician; and as Leasnam wrote, that noun probably goes back to the Proto-Germanic *prikô, whilst the verb probably goes back to the Proto-Germanic *prikjaną, *prikōną. Of course the noun and the verb derive from the same root ultimately, but the different parts of speech became distinct long ago, and should be kept distinct in the way we present these words. Moreover, the OED keeps the noun and verb distinct; like that dictionary, we should do the same. — I.S.M.E.T.A. 08:21, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
Undone, pending completion of the discussion. @Angr: re: "Just like other dictionaries". The dictionaries that keep such etymologies separate include the OED, Century, MW Online, MW 1913. The "better" dictionaries that don'tcombine them include AHD, RHU, Oxford (online), WNW. I suppose one could say that "modern" dictionaries tend not make the distinction, just as they downgrade the presentation of etymology by placing it at the bottom of the entry. I would say that "better", "historical" dictionaries make the distinction. DCDuring TALK 13:28, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
I think ones where just 'the verb is derived from the noun' (i.e. in modern English) we should keep them as a single etymology. But when they go back to different Middle English (or older than that) forms we should separate them. Having said that, I think there are usability issues when you do that, many users won't understand the distinct and will complain on WT:FEED that prick doesn't have any noun definitions or doesn't have any verb definitions. Renard Migrant (talk) 10:43, 3 May 2015 (UTC)
I agree with your qualification.
I don't think it hurts to stimulate use of WT:FEED, but for every instance someone voices an objection or question there are probably multiple users who are confused and disheartened and don't bother coming back. Of course this isn't a problem if we are just creating a dictionary for our own enjoyment, which seems to be the case. DCDuring TALK 12:30, 3 May 2015 (UTC)
I agree with Renard Migrant that noun → verb or verb → noun developments that occurred in Modern English without change of spelling or pronunciation ought not to be given separate etymology sections. — I.S.M.E.T.A. 14:39, 3 May 2015 (UTC)
Of course that makes most sense. I too agree. Leasnam (talk) 13:36, 8 May 2015 (UTC)
I don't think that noun → verb or verb → noun developments that occurred even as far back as PIE should be given separate etymology sections. I think it makes us look amateurish, as if we didn't understand how etymologies work, if we do. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 13:43, 8 May 2015 (UTC)
The same amateur category as OED, MW, Century, and Online Etymology Dictionary? DCDuring TALK 16:47, 8 May 2015 (UTC)
I dunno, it looks less unprofessional when they do it than when we do. Maybe because their lemmas just modestly say things like ¹prick and ²prick, where the superscripts could be numbering POSes rather than etymologies, whereas we have big-ass headings saying "Etymology 1" and "Etymology 2" (which imply, you know, different etymologies), and you scroll down to etymology 2 only to find it's just a denominal verb from etymology 1 and not really a separate etymology at all. And then you think, "WTF? Who the hell thinks that yellow the verb has a different etymology from yellow the adjective?" —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 17:12, 8 May 2015 (UTC)
Taxonomy and other categorizing fields have lumpers and splitters. Apparently so does etymology.
I have a similar problem with those who seem to imply that yellow#Verb split from yellow#Noun/yellow#Adjective in Modern English. That it is more trivial than a split of earlier origin is immaterial. At the very least separate presentation indicates that the two have had time to accrete additional meanings on distinct tracks — as they have, though you would not know it from the definitions of yellow#Verb we offer our users, which seem to imply that yellow#Verb could possibly mean "become a coward" or "become a ball marked with the number two in pocket billiards". A little too much lumping and economy it seems to me. DCDuring TALK 18:23, 8 May 2015 (UTC)
I would prefer etymology splits to be reserved for words with completely unrelated origins. If more than one "branch" of word development is involved, couldn't that be explained in a single etymology section? 02:25, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
I agree. --WikiTiki89 14:24, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
We're talking about words that diverged in P.I.E. here; they're pretty distinct… — I.S.M.E.T.A. 14:59, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
In that case we need separate etymology sections for prick (infinitive), prick (1st person singular, present tense), prick (plural, present tense), etc., since they also diverged in (or before) PIE, before reconverging in sometime between OldE and ModernE. --WikiTiki89 15:08, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
@Wikitiki89: Those conjugated forms are not separate lemmata, though, are they? — I.S.M.E.T.A. 15:12, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
What's a lemma? A lemma is a form chosen to represent a set of related forms in a dictionary. That has absolutely nothing to do with etymologies. --WikiTiki89 15:15, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
@Wikitiki89: My point is that we don't give separate etymologies for anisomorphic nonlemmata, so why should we give separate etymologies for isomorphic nonlemmata? — I.S.M.E.T.A. 15:31, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
And my point is that we should not give separate etymologies for isomorphic forms, lemmata or not. The only reason we don't have separate etymology sections for anisomorphic non-lemmata, is because they are not lemmas, so it is unclear which form the etymology should go at. We do in fact give separate etymologies for them within the same etymology section (see the last sentence of the etymology section at be). --WikiTiki89 15:38, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
We are not modelling any specific theory of word origins; we are making a dictionary that should be of use to folks besides us and people just like us. But we often should and do show distinct etymologies, at least by reference, for homonyms, sometimes for inflected forms (See pricks.). In any event we postulate that, say, in English, plurals of nouns and all inflected forms of verbs have a common derivation that is grammatical, distinct from semantic etymology. We certainly should and often do show separate etymologies for denominal and deverbal "ed" forms, for example, even though they may have the same "ultimate" origin. (Stopping at PIE is just an artifice of our current state of "knowledge", anyway.) Why? Because it makes the different meanings of the uses of the "ed" forms more comprehensible to normal users. (Remember them?) DCDuring TALK 16:51, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
@Wikitiki89: Contra your point, I think that be is a special case, in which it would probably be a good idea to give is, was, are, were, etc. their own, detailed, etymology sections. — I.S.M.E.T.A. 19:27, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
Something like the way oxforddictionaries.com handles it seems better to me: http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/us/definition/american_english/prick. Acknowledge that there is a difference, but don't make it seem as if they are completely unrelated words. 19:48, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
You're probably right: We shouldn't pretend that we are as good as the unabridged dictionaries that keep them separate. After all, it's not as if we were professional lexicographers and this a real dictionary. DCDuring TALK 21:50, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
I don't know exactly how all your unabridged dictionaries present this, but, as ANGR mentions above, one particular issue with Wiktionary's presentation is the "big-ass" etymology headings which seem to make such a big-ass deal out of it. 23:35, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
I couldn't agree with you more. I have hidden (using show-hide bars) several ridiculously extensive cognate lists and essays in etymology sections, but that is not always sufficient, some entries having several lists of cognates and discursive text interleaved with the more essential elements of the etymology. Others have suggested showing only one step on a given entry, but that often means showing, say, Old French, but not Latin or Ancient Greek in an English entry. DCDuring TALK 23:58, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
@DCDuring: As long as the etymon is attested, a list of cognates is usually of little value, because those cognates can easily be accessed in that etymon's Descendants section. — I.S.M.E.T.A. 01:22, 12 June 2015 (UTC)
I expect that to become true when Wiktionary is finished, some time after BD's next vacation. DCDuring TALK 03:35, 12 June 2015 (UTC)
@DCDuring: Was that comment really necessary? We don't need to have entries for all etyma with mutliple descendants in order to have fewer long lists of cognates in etymology sections (obviously). For my part, if you ever want to get rid of a list of Romance cognates that belong to an uncreated Latin entry, feel free to ask me to create that Latin entry. — I.S.M.E.T.A. 17:53, 12 June 2015 (UTC)

Food for thought: 1. Our purpose is not to impress professional linguists but to map information for interested people. 2. If you remove, merge, simplify existing correct etymologies, you are undoing time and work someone took upon himself, and remove information someone might want to read. 3. No Paper. 4. Collapsible boxes exist. More generally: Do not confuse the need for better formatting with the need to remove correct information. Korn [kʰʊ̃ːæ̯̃n] (talk) 12:29, 12 June 2015 (UTC)

Also, you do not necessarily need to remove information to merge etymology sections. You can merge the information as well. --WikiTiki89 13:56, 12 June 2015 (UTC)

"während" (dativ?)

Hi, I am rather new to this so I do hope not to get too many things wrong.

I stumbled upon "während". In its "usage notes" under 2) it mentiones usage of the Dativ. Quite frankly, without external qualified reference I think that sentence such as the example given there "Ich wurde während einem Gespräch angerufen." are just plain wrong. This has nothing to do with beeing pretentious. Even if a sentence like this can be found among the germon speaking populous, the reason is more likly to be found in a lack of command of the language rather than qualified "coloquial usage"

Maybe somone can come up with a proper reference to the claim that using the Dativ is acceptable. In any case I hope this can be of use to someone and thank everyone involved for their great contributions.

kind regards.

The Duden accepts dative usage. Since German government offices are accepting the Duden as binding, that means it's part of official German. As such I don't see any modification necessary. (Except maybe to the Duden.) _Korn (talk) 12:39, 6 May 2015 (UTC)
It doesn't matter if it's "acceptable". It matters if it's done. And it is done. Apart from that: I don't know about "während", but Goethe himself used wegen with dative in his private letters. It's such a common thing and, as far as I am concerned, has nothing to do with lacking command of language. To the contrary: it's the native way of speaking German. But again: What matters is not how we like something or not, but the reality of language (a loan translation there of Sprachwirklichkeit). Kolmiel (talk) 22:51, 7 May 2015 (UTC)
But the reality of the language is also that there are common and codified standards and anyone aspiring to speak a standard is making errors when he uses forms which are not part of that standard. If one is not making these errors on purpose (e.g. by consciously speaking colloquially), it is a lack of command, native or not. As a dictionary we have to include annotations on what is what, of course. Korn (talk) 19:25, 8 May 2015 (UTC)
@Korn ('cause of mentioning duden etc.): At duden.de it is: "Präposition mit Genitiv" and "Standardsprachlich mit Dativ, wenn der Genitiv im Plural nicht erkennbar ist". That's something different than just "(+ genitive or dative)" as it's here (if one ignores the usages notes).
@Kolmiel: wegen is another word, and even if one is descriptive, one could add a note like "in standard language only with genitive, colloquially also with dative" (if it's correct of course). Regarding authors like Goethe and Schiller: Their writing might be "obsolete" by now, so it might be something like "with genitive, obsolete also with dative". (I kind of dislike such a label, but descriptively that's what could be correct.)
How about "(+ genitive (or dative))" instead of just "(+ genitive or dative)" indicating that genitive and dative aren't equally applicable, as it's (nowadays) usually genitive and only in some cases dative? Fur further information there're the usage notes. -Iftjbda (talk) 11:05, 24 May 2015 (UTC)


Moved from Wiktionary:Requested entries (Vietnamese), added by User:Hippietrail:

@Hippietrail I've checked a dictionary and I can confirm the missing senses (e.g. "bằng ô tô" - "by car", "bằng đường bộ" - "by land") but, as I said on my talk page, not sure about which etymology it belongs to - it may be a third etymology.
@Fumiko Take, could you help here, please, just for this sense? There's a big list of Sino-Vietnamese readings and maybe native words as well, I know it's very hard for monosyllabic Vietnamese words.--Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 02:18, 1 May 2015 (UTC)
@Atitarev According to Mark J. Alves, bằng is a grammatical word of possible Chinese origin (from (bình)), which has two meanings: "equal to" and "made of". I think it's possible that the "by means of" sense has been developed from those two senses. It may also derive from (bằng, to depend on). ばかFumikotalk 03:00, 1 May 2015 (UTC)
@Fumiko Take, Hippietrail Thanks. I've fitted a new sense into the "adjective" section in diff. Should this be a new PoS instead? Anyway, the missing sense is covered. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 03:05, 1 May 2015 (UTC)
@Atitarev What's a PoS? Should "by means of" be considered an adjective? I feel like that sense should be covered in an adverb entry or something. "làm bằng tay" can be roughly translated to "do/make manually" after all. ばかFumikotalk 03:11, 1 May 2015 (UTC)
@Fumiko Take "PoS" is "part of speech", sorry :). The usage is like a preposition. I've made a preposition section, is it better? In your example - "làm bằng tay", "bằng" is also a preposition. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 03:17, 1 May 2015 (UTC)
@Atitarev Yeah, that will do. ばかFumikotalk 03:19, 1 May 2015 (UTC)
Hey I was reading that Vietnamese doesn't really have prepositions but rather relational nouns. But I think it's a bit like English where "part of speech" isn't used in linguistics any more, being replace by "word class", but dictionaries do stay with the tradition. But having it as an adjective seems very wrong. In Vietnamese adjectives are pretty much verbs, which are in opposition syntactically to nouns, of which prepositions are a type. Anyway I looked it up in vi.wiktionary and indeed their entry has a "Giới từ" sense, which I believe is "preposition", so that would make more sense. Well just my 2 cents. — hippietrail (talk) 13:59, 1 May 2015 (UTC)
Yeah, there are several languages like that in the area. Khmer "adjectives" are actually verbs; most Thai words that are translated as adjetives are really verbs; Hawaiian adjectives are stative verbs. It rattles my nerves every time I make an entry for them and have to decide whether to label it a verb or an adjective. Navajo and Apache are likewise, but for these cases there is a very strong precedent to calling them verbs and not adjectives. —Stephen (Talk) 12:33, 7 May 2015 (UTC)
Burmese is another one. I'd love to empty Category:Burmese adjectives and call them all verbs (since they are), but as every Burmese dictionary I've ever seen calls certain verbs "adjectives" based on the English translation, I feel it would be presumptuous of me (since I don't even speak the language) to break with tradition. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 13:48, 8 May 2015 (UTC)

' and -' etc.

moved to Wiktionary:Tea room/2015/May#' and -' etc.